Student Assistance Program


Getting the most out of your school's Student Assistance Program

What is SAP?
The Student Assistance Program in your school is provided by The Council of Southeast Pennsylvania.

The SAP team within your school consists of SAP trained and certified; school counselors, teachers, social workers, administrators, and the SAP Counselor (from The Council). The team meets regularly to discuss students who may have been referred to the SAP team for various reasons. The goal of the team is to identify barriers that may be preventing the student from being successful in school and to implement the needed support services to assist him/her.

“It is next to impossible to expect teaching and learning to occur in a crisis without attending to our emotions.” -Christina Cipriano, Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence

Student Assistance Programs in Bucks County

Have you noticed recent changes in a student's behavior?

Emotional Concerns:

  • Inappropriate responses
  • Death of a family member or friend
  • Writings or drawings that reflect death
  • Negative attitude
  • Appears sad or withdrawn
  • Sudden outbursts of anger
  • Overly critical of self
  • Blames others
  • Expresses uselessness/hopelessness

Physical Concerns:

  • Appears tired
  • Poor hygiene
  • Falls asleep in class
  • Complains of nausea or headaches
  • Noticeable change in weight
  • Unsteady on feet
  • Disciplinary action
  • Frequent cold like symptoms
  • Self-abuse (self-harm, ex. cutting, burning)

Social Concerns:

  • Social Isolation Overly critical of peers
  • Difficulty with peer relationships
  • Inattentive to social cues
  • Change in friends
  • Lacks age-appropriate social skills

Behavioral Concerns:

  • Negative attitude
  • Disruptive or attention seeking
  • Bullying, fighting, or threatening
  • Defies rules
  • Openly expresses drug/alcohol use
  • Defensive or argumentative

Virtual Concerns:

  • Does not regularly participate
  • Does not seek additional help (and should)
  • Does not reply when called upon
  • Does not appear engaged in the lesson
  • Makes inappropriate use of the chatroom
  • Seems distracted by home environment during class
  • Is frequently late to class or attendance throughout class is sporadic
  • Does not participates in breakout room group activities
  • Truancy
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What The Student Assistance Program Offers:

Short term 1:1 Problem Solving Services (Does not require a formal SAP referral)

  • Support for re-entry (if a student was recently in treatment and is transitioning back to into school)
  • Follow up from a crisis
  • Follow up on a former SAP case
  • Substance use policy violation
  • A bridge for a student awaiting counseling services

Group Facilitation Services(Does not require a formal SAP referral)

  • Psychoeducational
  • Age appropriate
  • Topics include Healthy Choices, Friendship Skills, Anger Management, Coping Skills, Addiction Education, Grief & Loss, and Children of an Addict/Alcoholic

Assessment Services (Requires a formal SAP referral)

  • Face to face services with the student and family to identify supports to assist in reaching goals
  • All assessments are behavioral health assessments
  • SAP counselor will support families in identifying resources within insurance networks

When you address social & emotional needs, academic improvement will follow

The SAP Process- after a referral has been made

1. Anyone can make a referral. Contact the student's school counselor to do this.

2. After a student gets referred to SAP, the SAP team will meet and gather objective information about the student's performance in school to help determine what supports may be needed for academic success.

3. The SAP Counselor will meet with the family and the student to review data that was collected and work together to identify supports for personal and academic success.

4. A SAP Screening and Behavioral Health Assessment (Mental Health and/or Drug & Alcohol) may be recommended. The purpose of a SAP Screening and Behavioral Health Assessment is to identify what supports within the educational system and the community the student may need to be successful.

5. After the screening and assessment, the SAP Counselor will continue working with the family and student and follow up on any services that were recommended.

Meet Your School's SAP Counselor

Maria Spinosa

(267) 895-5048

Contact the School Counselors for more info or to refer a student! Your input is valuable!

Student Assistance Program (SAP)
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