Evidence-Based Practice in School Mental Health
Though recent legislation embedded with the No Child Left Behind Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Improvement Act mandates the use of evidence in school-based practice to demonstrate positive outcomes for all students, school social workers - especially those long out of school - often lack the conceptual tools to locate, evaluate, and apply evidence in order to demonstrate the effectiveness of their work. The first of its kind tailored specifically to this audience, this SSAAA Workshop title guides school professionals in infusing research throughout their daily practice. It shows school service providers a pragmatic approach to informing every major practice decision with the appropriate research so that students receive the best possible services. This includes how to use research to make reliable and valid assessments, how to use research to choose the best intervention, and how to do research to evaluate progress. Raines goes beyond creating a catalog of interventions that will soon be outdated and provides school social workers with a detailed road map of the EBP process.
Chapters detail the nuts and bolts of EBP, explaining how to ask a relevant, answerable question; where to search for evidence; how to appraise the literature and avoid the pitfalls of web based information; how to adapt and apply the evidence in a developmentally and culturally sensitive way; and how to evaluate the results. Detailed examples along the way, including sample spreadsheets practitioners can easily adapt to evaluate their students' progress, bring accountability within reach for school professionals who struggle to find the time, resources, and support sufficient to apply the best evidence to their schools.