Mental Health Services

Mental Health Services at BOCES 2

School psychologist assessing student
Mental Health department members at Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES function as part of a multi-disciplinary team on behalf of the students and families whom we serve. More specifically, mental health team members provide direct individual and group counseling services, peer mediation or restorative justice practices, crisis intervention, behavioral interventions, classroom consultation, parent/guardian support, and can assist families by acting as a liaison with community service providers. 

On-going support to the classroom staff and families around a student’s social, emotional, behavioral and/or learning needs also occurs. Additional consultants are sometimes utilized to provide added insight and support to students who may have more involved concerns in areas such as development, behavior, learning, psychiatric and/or substance abuse issues.   

Who Provides the Service?

Counselor with students
The Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES Mental Health Department is comprised of NYS certified school psychologists and dually NYS licensed/certified school social workers. Both disciplines have earned at least master’s level training and studies may include areas such as child development, behavioral intervention strategies, crisis intervention techniques, family systems theory and community resource awareness.  

Who Gets the Service?

Counselor with student
Student Counseling
Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), counseling services are available to support students both academically and personally. Students whose districts have identified a need, generally through an Individual Education Plan (IEP), can receive counseling. The student and counselor meet on an on-going basis, as directed by the IEP, to form a therapeutic relationship. Counseling can be provided individually or within a small group setting. 

Through the therapeutic relationship, the counselor helps the student modify attitudes and behaviors that may interfere with school success while helping the student to achieve his/her potential in the follow areas: social, emotional, behavioral, academic. Mental Health staff, in conjunction with classroom teachers, may also conduct social-emotional lessons within the classroom setting separate from IEP status. In addition, any student within an academic program setting, regardless of whether they receive direct counseling, may receive support from a mental health provider if crisis situations arise.  

Parent Counseling
The counselor and the parent/guardian meet regularly to form a working relationship in order to support the student in his/her academic setting. Goals of the service may include: 
  • promotion of positive home/school communication, 
  • increased understanding of student functioning, 
  • enhancement of parenting skills, 
  • management of student behavior, and 
  • acquisition of needed resources to help meet student/family needs. 
Parent Counseling services must be indicated on a student’s IEP. Parent educational/support groups may also be formed on an as-needed basis for interested parents/guardians.

Family Support Services
At times, the needs of a student and a family exceed what can be done through the traditional school counseling mode. Family Support Services is a short-term, more intensive service that is available to work with the entire family unit in a setting that is most comfortable to the family. Referrals for this service must come from a family’s home school district.

For More Information

Maria Tantillo 
Department Chair 
160 Wallace Way, Building 9 
Rochester, NY 14624
Phone: (585) 617-2301
Fax: (585) 349-8897

Why School Mental Health Education?

When young people are educated about mental health, the likelihood increases they will be able to effectively recognize signs and symptoms in themselves and others and will know where to turn for help. New York State Education Department: Mental Health

What is Psychological Assessment?

Certified school psychologists assess student cognitive, developmental, adaptive behavior, achievement, social/emotional skills, as well as behavioral and personality characteristics. This is done using a variety of standardized tests, observations and student/caregiver/staff interviews. A written report includes test results and interpretation.  

Psychological Assessment information like this is taken into consideration by the Committee on Special Education (CSE) to help determine needs such as classification eligibility, learning style and educational supports. A student's performance and program are evaluated at least every three years, and assessments are completed as determined by the student's IEP team.