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.


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