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School Based Crisis Prevention and Intervention, April, 18th, 2013

On April 28th, 2013 Tanya Romasz- McDonald conducted a workshop on School Based Crisis Prevention and Intervention for GSAPP students. In addition to being a graduate of GSAPP’s School Psychology program, she has been working in the schools as a school psychologist for over ten years and she is a contributing faculty member at GSAPP. Crisis is one of her areas of expertise, which she has developed through attending numerous trainings facilitated by law enforcement agencies, as well as experiences in the schools. The NASP student chapter at GSAPP initiated this four-hour workshop based on student interest on the topic. In attendance were 25 students who represented both the school and clinical program and who were in various stages of their training (first through forth year students).

Tanya’s interactive presentation covered the following topic areas: what constitutes a crisis, a theoretical model that guides crisis prevention and intervention, legal mandates for school based crisis, typical student and staff reactions to a disaster, roles and responsibilities of school based crisis teams, and formulation of a school based plan for crisis prevention and intervention.

It was really wonderful how Tanya was able to provide students with very relevant and practical information on best practices and she also gave students the opportunity to ask questions, which resulted in very helpful discussion on the topic that students could apply to their current and future work in the schools. An example of one of the interactive activities was when students were assigned to groups that represented each of the 6 members of the school based crisis team (for example, one group was the counseling liaison, another was the medical liaison).
workshop Each group had to develop the responsibilities at the primary, secondary, and tertiary levels for that team member and then this information was shared with the whole group and put into a single document, which enabled students in attendance to leave the workshop with guidelines to help in the formulation of roles and responsibilities for each of the team members. Overall, this was such a wonderful event where all students who were able to attend were able to enhance their knowledge of this very important topic!