Mobile County Public Schools has invested in programs designed to assist students, families, and employees who are struggling with mental health issues. Funding for these programs comes from a variety of state and local sources, along with federal COVID relief money through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER).
“Collaboration with our community partners is essential to ensure that our students get the support they need,” said Denise Riemer, MCPSS Mental Health Services Coordinator.
The mental health programs and expansions include:
Training to address childhood trauma in the school setting; suicide prevention; threat assessment; and social-emotional learning.
Rhithm, an early-warning app that allows students to check in with their teachers and counselors by using emojis to share their feelings.
LearnSafe, which monitors student-issued devices for any communication involving self-harm, harm to others, or inappropriate content.
OneVoice Matters, an anonymous reporting system that students may use to alert authorities about threats.
iPads for all school counselors, enabling them to access safety protocols and SEL interventions.
The hiring of additional social workers. MCPSS has more than doubled its number of social workers to 13, plus a Lead Social Worker/Mental Health Services Coordinator.
MCPSS pays the Mobile County District Attorney's Office to employ five case officers to provide interventions and services to students and families with behavior and other SEL issues.
Full-time therapists at four schools that specialize in intervention and assessment of students with emotional and behavioral issues. In addition, AltaPointe Health covers the costs for 21 therapists, and Mostellar Medical Center provides one.
West Mobile Academy, a day treatment program operated by BayPointe Hospital, for students who need more services through AltaPointe.
Substance abuse/mental health therapists are available to serve high school and middle school students at The Bridge, a nonprofit organization that offers substance use treatment services.
The Boys and Girls Clubs of South Alabama is contracted to provide art, music, mindfulness, and mental health services to students.