Mental Health Needs Assessment for Schools

Good morning, all!

We are working on creating a mental health needs assessment for our school division, so that we can collect data and move in the direction of becoming more trauma-sensitive in our approaches. Does anyone have a mental health needs assessment for schools, students, faculty, or any other instrument that you feel would be helpful?

Thanks for any help or suggestions!


Original Post

Hi Stephanie,

Are you familiar with TCOM - (Transformational Collaborative Outcomes Management) founded by Dr. John Lyons (University of Chicago) and one key communimetric tool used throughout the US and internationally called the CANS (child adolescent needs and strengths) assessment?  It is an excellent tool used collaboratively with the family (and others) to help you create treatment plans for the most timely action needs of an individual child.  

There are different versions of the CANS depending on your region.  It incorporates  a look at the whole child's needs and strengths in the context of their development, living situation, caregiver strengths and needs, school partnership, behavior health, risk factors, ACEs and more. 

I work with the CANS-NY technical assistance institute, coaching providers for Health Homes for Children to earn their required CANS certification, and ensuring quality training for New York State providers through the platform.   The Institute is a result of NY State's Department of Health collaboration with Chapin Hall at University of Chicago. 

Please let me know if you would like more information or a connection to learn more. 


Thank you so much, Bari! I am familiar with the CANS. It is an excellent tool.

I am actually looking for a broader tool, something that can be taken by staff and students to determine needs for an entire school, if that makes sense. I apologize for being unclear in my original message, and I thank you for your response!


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