The Mental Health and Behavioral Support Services team supports all students PK3 through grade 5 with disabilities who have related services outlined in their IEP.

The team consists of DCPS social workers who work with students on issues they face at school, at home, in the community and elsewhere that affect their ability to participate in and benefit from their education. These services can include group or individual counseling; home visits; and social, emotional and behavioral assessments. School social workers work with teachers to analyze student behavior and functioning over time to develop strategies that help maximize learning in the classroom. These social workers also connect students and families with community resources to maximize the impact of in-school behavioral support services. Social workers are part of the crisis response team, which supports students and school staff when a crisis occurs.  Payne ES is staffed with 2 full-time school social workers, one assigned to support the BES Programs and one who supports other students receiving special education behavior support services and helps to support those in the general education program.  These school social workers are also responsible for attendance counseling, serving as homeless families liaison(s) and transportation support. The Department of Behavior Health (DBH) has provided a third social worker part-time to help meet the needs of Payne students and families.

The psychology team supports students and educators by giving psychological and developmental tests, analyzing information about a child’s behavior and cognitive functioning, and interpreting these results with school staff and parents. DCPS psychologists work with parents, teachers and other IEP team members to ensure that test results and other information are used to determine the appropriate services and develop goals. School psychologists also help school staff and parents develop learning and behavior strategies.

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