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New pilot program launching at some TUSD schools to provide behavioral health services

TUCSON- Casa de los Niños is partnering with the Tucson Unified School District to provide behavioral health services to students and their families through a new pilot program.

“I think it is vital because it removes a barrier for the family and student to access services,” said Dave Slay, an outreach program manager at Casa de los Niños.

The organization will provide on-site behavioral health service workers at 10 TUSD K-12th-grade schools.

They will be offering counseling services for both students and their families.

“What people also need to keep in mind is that if a child is struggling with trauma, struggling with other social-emotional needs that has an impact on their academic success,” said TUSD’s Tammy Hille. “So if something has happened in their lives where they are having difficulty concentrating, having difficulty coming to school, they are suffering from depression or anxiety, they won’t be able to function as effectively in the classroom until they get those services to help them with coping skills.”

There is no cost to the district for this program and for most families, there should be no fee for services.

Moving forward, the district said that it is looking to grow this pilot program at more schools this summer and into next year.

Matt Benz

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