Supporting and Promoting Mental Health in Out-of-School Time

Given evidence of trauma due to recent global and national issues, communities must consider all outlets and resources possible to address the needs of children and families. Out-of-school time (OST) programs foster socialization, relationships, and adaptive functioning. These programs are uniquely positioned to support and promote children’s healthy development, inclusive of mental health needs instigated by trauma. Children are not the only recipients; parents and the OST workforce can benefit from mental health supports provided directly or indirectly in these environments.

This practice brief explores some of the current mental health needs of school-age children, their families, and the OST workforce. In addition, this brief discusses the social and emotional constructs that promote resilience, as well as examples of mental health supports that states and local jurisdictions can consider for collaborative implementation.

This document is available in Spanish.

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