Implementation of Targeted Mental Health Interventions in Urban Schools: Preliminary Findings on the Impact of Training Strategy on Program Fidelity

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School-based mental health programs are increasingly recognized as methods by which to improve children’s access to evidence-based practices (EBPs), particularly in urban under-resourced communities. School-wide positive behavior interventions and supports (PBIS) is one approach to integrating mental health services into school-based programming; however, school providers require training and support to implement programs as intended. We have conducted a randomized controlled trial to compare two models for training school-based personnel to deliver group EBPs to children at high risk of developing internalizing or externalizing problems. School personnel (N = 24) from six schools in a large urban school district were trained with either a basic training and consultation strategy or an enhanced training and consultation strategy. Preliminary findings show that the enhanced strategy resulted in 9% higher content fidelity than the basic strategy. School personnel who were switched to the basic strategy had slightly lower content fidelity for the last 2 years of the trial and school personnel who continued to receive basic consultation during the step-down phase saw their fidelity decline. The two conditions did not differ with regard to process fidelity.

Authors:

Eiraldi R, Khanna M, Jawad AF, Power TJ, Cacia J, Cabello B, Schwartz BS, Swift L, Kanine R, Orapallo A, McCurdy B, Mautone JA