The Resilient Cardinal

Cardinal Care Mental Health Supports

February 2020

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Because You Matter

“The oak fought the wind and was broken, the willow bent when it must and survived.”


I love this quote because it shows the importance of resiliency. Resiliency is the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. Three simple things you can do to help build resiliency are connecting with nature, building time into your day for reflection, and exercise.

Being in nature, or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, fear, and stress while increasing pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it contributes to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones.

When you take time to reflect, you bring awareness to the things you have accomplished, and the path you want to take to continue. Reflection can take the form of meditation, a journaling session, a gratitude exercise, or a walk outside while you think back on your day.

Exercise helps strengthen the brain and makes it more resilient to stress and adversity. Moderate and regular exercise has been found to decrease cortisol levels (a stress hormone). Even a 10-minute brisk walk can reduce anxiety and increase daytime energy!

Jamie Ganske

The Cardinal Care Website is here!

Please visit to visit our new website! It includes resources for parents and staff.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Opportunities

There are more opportunities available to sign up for Youth Mental Health First Aid. This year we are hoping to have all secondary non-classroom teachers trained. You can sign up on the Professional Development Tab for the following opportunities:

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Date: April 14

Location: Middle School

Time: 8-4

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Date: June 11

Location: Korger

Time: 8-4

There is an additional opportunity if you are interested! There is a free training offered on March 3, 10 and 17 from 5-8 pm in the Altoona High School library. The training also includes a meal and childcare. In order to receive certification as a Youth Mental Health First Aid Responder, you must be able to attend all 3 dates. Seats for this training will be limited. Register by emailing Jen Kronenberg at Registration will close at 3 PM on February 21, 2020.

AWARE grant information: What have we been able to do so far?!

The Project AWARE grant has four main goals. Here are just a few of the things we have accomplished this year under each goal!

1) Increase the capacity for schools to respond to onsite mental health crisis

  • Relevant staff attended day 1 of PREPaRE 2 training to support the development and implementation of a mental health crisis protocol
  • Parkview is getting trained in educational wraparound
  • Set up Youth Mental Health First Aid (YMHFA) trainings
  • Professional development was offered at the Cardinal Conferences in order to promote wellness and mental health
  • We developed flyers regarding the continuum of mental health interventions
  • We created a Cardinal Care Mental Health Supports website in order to communicate the available mental health supports

2) Increase youth and family voice and choice

  • We added a question to the parent engagement survey to find the percentage of parents who agree that their involvement in their child's education is valued
  • A subcommittee was created to work on creating a defined process for our screening/assessment results
  • We had our first mental health pop-up booth show up at the High School
  • A mental health teacher focus group was created at the High School

3) Improve cross system collaboration to improve mental health supports for children and youth

  • We have created a District and Community Leadership Team for the purpose of creating seamless mental health and behavioral health services
  • Community therapists are invited to the School Counselor meetings
  • We have implemented an Interconnected Systems Framework in 6 of our 9 buildings where community therapists are able to come offer professional development, co-facilitate small groups, offer consultation, etc.

4) Increase access to and engagement of mental health and wellness treatment resources for children and youth

  • We were able to hire a Mental Health Navigator
  • We updated/created a mental health referral pathway
  • We developed a procedure and tracking tool to track the mental health service referrals for students
  • We have implemented the BARR program for freshman students

Resources Available to Staff

1 group (8 hrs total) per semester for each pilot school (HS, CVHS, MS, HM, JF, SV)

1 training per semester for each pilot school (HS, CVHS, MS, HM, JF, SV)

1 booth at Parent/Teacher Conferences (available for all buildings twice per school year)

Attendance at 4 School Counselor Meetings (Elementary, MS, HS) (*Changed from attendance at 4 Tier 2 Meetings)

Attendance at DCLT meetings

20 Hours for Non-pilot schools to use for their needs

12 Hours of Consultation Time for any staff member in any building

What Co-facilitated Small Groups are available this year (HS, CVHS, MS, HM, JF, SV):

1. Coping Skills

2. Resilience

3. Emotion Regulation

4. Social Skills

5. Self-Care

Christy Langman is now available!

You can have Christy Langman come and do mindfulness and/or yoga with students or staff. Her e-mail is Her phone number is 715-271-3597. All schools have access to this resource. This will go towards our 218 hours available to use.

How do I use the Consultation Time?

Call 855-838-7170 and let them know you would like to talk to Rebecca Schalinske or Holly Hakes for consultation. This is meant to help with things like support around student issues in a classroom. This is not a counseling session.

Other Information:

*Other elementary groups can request co-facilitated small groups. We have 20 hours to use at your discretion!

*We increased the number of training/consultation hours available to our staff from last year to this year and created this plan on how to use the hours

*We are able to flex these hours to meet our needs as long as we do not exceed 218 hours.

*We have used 73 of the 218 total hours that we planned for with 73 hours in

progress (6 current groups at 8 hours each plus 25 hours of mindfulness training). That means we have used 146 hours of the 218 total hours available. We have 72 hours remaining that we can still utilize!

Student and Family Assistance Program Update

2018-2019 Data:

* We anticipated 250 counseling sessions to be delivered. Over 400 counseling sessions were delivered.

*There were 201 authorizations, but some families split their 4 sessions across more than one child. There were 169 different families that utilized the program.

* The two top presenting problems were anxiety and depression

Adjustments for 2019-2020:

* We increased the number of anticipated sessions to 325.

2019-2020 Data:

* We are anticipating 325 counseling sessions for this year. We have delivered 150 as of 1/27/2020.


*SFAP referrals have been steady. Counselor shortages are still a reported issue. We are monitoring waitlists and doing our best to keep callers informed about resource availability.

*Initial data on presenting problems shows anxiety, depression, and anger as the top presenting issues consistent with last school year.

School Based Mental Health Update

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District and Community Leadership Team Update

The District and Community Leadership Team (DCLT) is a group of school district and community executive level administration, who have the authority to reallocate resources, change policy, sustain, and scale the key elements and core features of the Interconnected Systems Framework (ISF). The DCLT meets at least three times throughout the school year.

Mission/Vision of DCLT:

Our community partnerships will promote staff awareness and increase understanding of mental health supports and resources so all students will develop life-long resiliency

Progress Monitoring Goal:

We will establish baseline data measuring frequency of community clinician contacts with educators for consultation, collaboration, and professional development. (REALiving will track this data)

Our next District and Community Team is scheduled for February 6th.


COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHT: NAMI (Barb Habben presenting)

2019-2020 action plan (Stoplight report) DCLT Action Plan 2019-2020

Student and Family Assistance Program (SFAP) Update

School Based Mental Health (SBMH) data Update

HS Staff Focus Group Update

Plan for Parent Focus Group

Discussion: Referral Process between agencies and School