Student Resources

  • students at ashley elementary

  • Below is a compilation of resources designed to support our students' social emotional and mental health. Click on the + sign to expand what's available in each catagory!

  • Mental Health Supports

  • School Social Workers and School Psychologists, Department of Social Work and Psychological Services

    All district-run schools have at least 1.0 FTE of a mental health provider (school social worker and/or school psychologist). This provider should be the first responder for high level behavioral or mental health concerns. If these providers need consultation, coaching or a thought partner, please encourage them to reach out to the department leadership, Senior Manager, Meredith Fatseas and Managers, Cari Ledger, Maria Huber and Courtney Sommer.

    • Support, coaching and consultation for SW/SP staff (, 720-423-2400):
    • Cari Ledger, Manager, School Psychology and Assessment
    • Maria Huber, Manager, Social Work and Mental Health
    • Amanda Wentz, Manager, Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention
    • Courtney Sommer, Manager, Mental Health and Behavior Support

  • District Crisis Recovery Team

    The District Crisis Recovery Team (DCRT)  assists schools with significant crises that affect the school community and overwhelm the capacity of the school based mental health team. The DCRT assists schools in ensuring safety and the quick return to instruction. The team provides student support groups, individual counseling, sample scripts and/or letter temples, as well as provide general consultation in responding after a crisis. DCRT can also assist staff meetings, as well as coordination of EAP services. 


    • DCRT Coordinators: 
      • Dr. Jane Lineman, Team Lead Student Saftey, 720-656-2989,
      • Meghan Kimball, Student Safety Coordinator, 720-812-0281,                                             
      • Alicia Franks Gibson, Student Safety Coordinator, 303-946-4369,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

  • School Counselors

    DPS School Counselors are Licensed Professional School Counselors who use school-wide outcome data to design counseling interventions that benefit ALL students through counseling core curriculum (Tier 1), intentional groups (Tier 2), and individual planning (ALL Tiers). Learn more at

  • Mental Health Pilot (Therapeutic Service Providers)

    The Therapeutic Service Providers Program supports 13 DPS schools (grades K-12) with trauma-informed, culturally relevant therapeutic interventions for students not receiving special education services. The goal of this  pilot is to increase access to mental health support and improve overall mental health among students. This is funded by the 2020 Mill Levy. 


    • Therapeutic Service Provider (TSP) Supervisor: Amanda Wentz, LCSW, SSP, 720-423-3955  

  • Leading a Multidisciplinary Team

  • Leading Advisory + SEAL Competencies

    Link to resource

  • Leading a multidisciplinary team for school culture

    One of our universal expectations is that schools assemble multi disciplinary teams. Learn how to assemble a multi disciplinary team to monitor data, climate and culture, and relationships, throughout the year, with district implementation support.

    See more resources.

  • Trauma Informed Practices

  • Trauma Informed Practices

    DPS is committed to supporting the whole child, incorporating a student’s social-emotional skills in addition to their academic success. We are also deeply aware that trauma can contribute to systemic and individualized educational barriers that interfere with emotional and physical health and impede access to education. Adopting trauma-informed practices helps us to recognize the impact of trauma, implement changes and bring our entire school community together to help students build healthy relationships and feel safe to learn and grow. When students feel safe and ready to learn, they are able to pursue their academic goals more easily. We want to ensure all of our educators understand how to use trauma-informed practices and strategies to help students be in a safe space to support positive behavior and learning. 

    Online Trauma 101 Training for DPS Staff: 

    Learn more on Trauma Informed Practices page on The Commons.


    • Marccus Spearman (, Manager of Trauma Informed and Restorative Practices                                                                                                                                
    • Monica Padilla (, Trauma Informed Specialist                                                                                                                                                                
    • Dina Zainy (, Trauma Informed Specialist
    • Request In-person Training (

  • Restorative Practices

  • Restorative Practices

    To support the social-emotional health of students and close the opportunity gap, creating equitable spaces and promoting positive school culture and community are essential.  Restorative practices do this through creating safe and trusted relationships - both individual and community-wide. Through the use of restorative practices, schools proactively plan and respond to community needs in a less punitive way. The work of RP is 80% preventative and 20% responsive. 

    The Restorative Practices team is excited to share an online training series that will serve as the Restorative Practice 101 training for DPS. The series is hosted in Schoology and credit will be automatically entered into Learning Space. For additional information on the training series, check out the flier

    Resources and Contacts: 

  • Substance Prevention Supports

  • Substance Prevention Supports

    The DPS Substance Use Prevention (SUP) Program was created to support schools with the design, implementation, and evaluation of multi-tiered systems of support for substance use prevention and early intervention in DPS schools. Services range from prevention initiatives that impact entire school populations to targeted interventions with identified students who are in the early stages of substance use; included is a focus on alternatives to traditional disciplinary measures for substance related offenses. 

    For general information on DPS's Substance Use Prevention Program, visit:

    For additional information, please contact

  • Safe and Healthy Schools

  • Safe and Healthy Schools

    DPS is committed to eradicating the school-to-prison pipeline. Studies show a national trend where children are removed from public schools and moved into the criminal justice system for minor offenses and non-violent behavior. Many of these children have trauma, learning disabilities, and a history of poverty. The resources provided are to assist schools in eliminating the need for law enforcement contact, and empower schools to have safe, welcoming and restorative communities. Learn more at

  • Special Education and Section 504 Supports

    Students should be referred for an evaluation if they have been diagnosed or if staff suspect the student may have a disability. Students with mental health disabilities can be served by Section 504 or Special Education Services if they qualify for services based on their needs.

  • Section 504 and Special Education

    The student must have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities as determined by a Section 504 team. Eligible students will have Section 504 plans. Students should be referred for an evaluation if they have been diagnosed or if staff suspect the student may have a disability. Students with mental health disabilities can be served by Section 504 or Special Education Services if they qualify for services based on their needs.


    • Arianna Shami, Section 504 Specialist (, 720-423-2400)
    • Kelley Morrison, Director of Special Services (, 720-423-2400)

    Special Education Services

    Students must have been found eligible for Special Education and will have Individualized Education Plans (IEP). Special Education has centralized staff to support school teams, students and families.


    • Crystal Burkhart, Senior Manager, Instruction and School Support
    • Lindsey Keese, Senior Manager, Instruction and School Support
    • Toni Becker, Senior Manager, Instruction and School Support
    • Jared Lemieux, Senior Manager, Instruction and School Support
    • Courtney Leyba, Senior Manager, Extended School Support
    • Julie Hemphill, Senior Manager, Special Services
    • Meredith Fatses, Senior Manager, Mental Health
    • Michael Winstons, Director of Special Education, Instruction and School Support
    • Charlie Merrow, Director of Special Education, Special Education, Compliance
    • Marie Quinn, Director of Nursing and Student Health
    • Kelley Morrison, Director of Special Services
    • Julie Rottier-Lukens, Executive Director of Exceptional Student Services

    Special Education Website (find assigned providers utilizing the map): Standard Operating Procedures, Resources, Information on Departments and Teams

    Special Education Schoology:   The Special Education Schoology Group is a support community to access resources, instructional tools and access to newsletters:

      • Go to DPS Schoology at 
      • Click on Groups 
      • Click on My Groups (right hand side)
      • Click on Join (at bottom of drop down)
      • Type in code: 3PVTJ-74S6T

      • This should take you to the list of groups you have joined.  Look for the group DPS Special Education Group.  If not, Click on Groups and then Click on DPS Special Education Group

    • Affective Needs (AN) Center supports:

      All AN centers have at least .5 FTE of a Mental Health Provider (school social worker or school psychologist) providing mental health interventions for these students as outlined in their IEPS. The Mental Health Leadership team provides coaching, evaluations and support for these school mental health staff. 


      • Courtney Sommer, Manager, Mental Health and Behavior Supports

    • Student Safety Supports

    • Safety Coordinators

      • Jane Lineman, PhD, NCSP (, Cell: 720-656-2939 2939                                                                                                         
      • Meghan Kimball, EdS, NCSP (, Cell: 720-812-0281
      • Alicia Franks-Gibson, EdS, NCSP (, Cell: 303-946-4369                                                                                                                                                                                           
      • Meredith Fatseas, Senior Manager, Mental Health

    • Suicide Risk Review Training

      This 1.5 hour training supports facilitation of the Suicide Risk Review process for students identified at risk for suicide. Training dates and times listed in the Schoology course. (Online or in person)

    • Suicide Prevention Programming

      Riding the Waves (5th grade): Riding the Waves is appropriate for fifth-grade students and taught by elementary school mental health staff. Lessons address healthy emotional development, depression, and anxiety. The goal is to build the emotional skills within children to prevent suicide at it’s earliest stages. Each of the 12 (30-40 minutes) lessons includes interactive discussions and skill-building activities. 


      Signs of Suicide (6th & 9th grades): The Signs of Suicide Prevention Program (SOS) is a universal, school-based depression awareness and suicide-prevention program designed for middle school or high school students. The goals are to: decrease suicide and suicide attempts by increasing student knowledge and adaptive attitudes about depression; encourage help-seeking; reduce the stigma of mental illness; engage parents and school staff as partners in prevention through “gatekeeper” education; encourage schools to develop community-based partnerships to support student mental health. 


      Access this content by visiting the Schoology site. Information pertaining to Riding the Waves, Signs of Suicide, Safe2Tell and other booster programming options may be accessed in the Suicide Risk Review Training course under “Suicide Prevention Programming.” Training site provides tools that include: SEL programming options, and relevant best practice literature. Registration is not required. (Online only). 

      Schoology Login Information

    • Non-Suicidal Self-Injury Protocol Training

      Training requires a 1-2 hour commitment. Resources and protocols accessible on the Suicide Risk Review Training course under “Self Injury Protocol and Resources.” Training site provides tools that include: protocols, SEL programming options, and relevant best practice literature. Training provided during district TEAL days. Protocol and training materials are found in the Suicide Risk Review Training Schoology course. 

    • Threat Appraisal Training

      Training requires a 3.5 hour commitment. Training supports facilitation of the threat response process for concerns of targeted violence. Training site provides tools that include: protocols, SEL programming options, planning documents, Action and Intervention Plan planning documents, level of concern matrix, example student plans, and relevant best practice literature. Training dates and times listed in the Schoology course. (Online and in person)

    • Individualized Supervision Management Plan (ISMP) Training

      Training requires a 1 hour commitment. Training site provides tools that include: protocols and example student cases. Training supports facilitation of the ISMP plan process. (Online only)

    • Safe2Tell Program

      To ensure student safety, all schools need to implement Safe2Tell programming in the form of one lesson (or more) in at least one grade (e.g., 5th grade, 6th grade, 9th grade). Staff and parents should receive information on Safe2Tell during their annual training. 


      The Safe2Tell Student Education Toolkit is designed to provide an overview to students, by age level, the importance of reporting concerns and how the Safe2Tell program works. The Toolkits are available at no costs to schools to equip teachers, school staff,law enforcement and community program leaders to effectively educate children and youth on the Safe2Tell message 

    • Truancy and Delinquency Supports

      ARCH Staffings: The Denver Collaborative Partnership manages ARCH staffings (HB04-1451). ARCH is an acronym for Accessing Resources for Case-planning Help and as such, seeks to determine root-cause issues for chronic absenteeism, truancy, and delinquency. The goal is to provide family and student support services to improve attendance, school engagement, and academic achievement. ARCH staffings are typically court-ordered meetings that are strengths-based, trauma-informed, and family/student directed. 

      ARCH Partner Agencies: ARCH partner agencies that seek to provide seamless and direct student supports include: Denver Department of Human Services, Mental Health Center of Denver, FamilyStrong Agency, Denver Public Safety Youth Programs, Denver Health and Hospital Authority, and tutor/mentor programs. If student cases involve delinquency charges, staffings include additional partners to discuss alternative placements or commitment within state facilities. 

      School based referrals: ARCH has a mechanism for school support teams to make direct referrals for those students about to be filed upon for truancy or those that have previously been filed upon and may be awaiting a court date. Parental/guardian involvement, a release of information agreement (ROI), and other prerequisites apply for school-based referrals.


    • Community Resources For Student Safety

      Below are example community resource handouts and links that support student safety needs. 

    • Student Safety Coordinators

      Student Safety Coordinators provide the following supports: 

      • Weekly office hours on Tuesdays, 8:00 - 10:00 am via Google Meets:   
      • Threat appraisal facilitation of  Level II Threat Appraisal Meetings as needed
      • Safety protocol review and feedback
      • Training, consultation and on call supports

    • Transformative SEAL Supports  

    • Universal Screening for Social-Emotional Learning

    • Social Emotional Screening

      The BASC-3 Behavioral and Emotional Screening System (BASC-3 BESS) tool allows DPS to identify potential behavioral and emotional concerns (mental health risks) in individuals or in large numbers of children and adolescents. With this information, DPS can adjust universal teaching and provide targeted and intensive social-emotional and mental health interventions to support our students' needs.

      During the 2023-24 school year, all eligible* students will be screened for mental health risk using two forms of the BESS (Student Self-Report Form, Teacher Report Form, and/or Parent Report Form) three times during the 23-24 school year (beginning, middle and end of the year). *Parents may opt their child out of completing the Student Self-Report Form. 

      • Parents/Guardians: Follow this link to read answers to Frequently Asked Questions: To complete a screening form during an open screening window, click this link.
      • DPS Staff: View the BESS Tab on the internal Department of Mental Health Google Site

      Screening dates for the 2023-24 school year are below:

      Student Self-Report Sep. 18 - Oct. 20 Jan. 2 - Feb. 2 Mar. 18 - Apr. 26
      Teacher Report Sep. 18 - Oct. 20 Jan. 2 - Feb. 2 Mar. 18 - Apr. 26
      Parent/Guardian Report Aug. 6 - Oct. 20 Dec. 16 - Feb. 2 Mar. 16 - Apr. 26


    • Resources and Supports

    • Additional Resources

      Colorado Crisis and Support Line
      or Text TALK to 38255
      Resource for mental health, substance use, or emotional crisis help – information and referrals
      National Suicide Hotline
      24-hour toll-free confidential suicide prevention hotline
      Second Wind Fund
      Provides free counseling to underinsured and uninsured youth that are suicidal
      Trevor Project Hotline
      Crisis intervention and suicide prevention services for LGBTQ+ youth
      Safe2Tell Colorado
      An anonymous way to report any concern impacting students (phone, app, online reporting options)
      I Matter Colorado
      Will direct students to an online survey for their needs and connect them to a therapist
      In addition to the resources above, TherapyDirect is available as a same-day, online crisis counseling service available to adults ages 18+ in the Denver metro area. TherapyDirect provides quick access to a counselor for a confidential 55-minute online session. Individuals can receive up to three sessions a year at no cost and interpretation services are available upon request. TherapyDirect is available Monday-Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. 

    • School Support Planning Document for Tier I and Tier II

      Restorative and preventative services include trauma-informed supports, restorative practice coordinators, substance use prevention, school culture and bullying prevention, as well as non violent crisis. 

      Link to resource