Presentation on theme: "Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge High School."— Presentation transcript:
Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge High School
The problems – what adolescents are dealing with (hot topics) The obstacles – to effective interventions Why traditional interventions aren’t working The solutions – what does work The unique role of the SAC
Escalating problems Demand on schools to address them
Use, abuse, dependence Family addiction Internet, eating disorders Drugs and alcohol Stress and anxiety disorders Depression, suicide Self-injurious behaviors Mental health Bullying, violence, gang involvement Relationship issues Family dysfunction Social - emotional
Peer acceptance Inclusion/Attention / Status / Confidence (social) Coping strategy To alter feelings / experiences Experimentation / curiosity / rebellion
Approximately 9 million Americans could be labeled as pathological computer users; addicted to the Internet to the detriment of work, study, and social life Byun, S., et al. Internet Addiction: Metasynthesis of Quantitative Research from 1996 – 2006, CyberPsychology and Behavior, Volume 12, Number 2, 2009.
Attention and approval Status Reputation Identity Bonding Anger Projection Power and control Entertainment value Loneliness or boredom Self-protection False security Jealousy or Competition Impulsivity
Difficulty foreseeing consequences Difficulty planning or setting priorities (making wise choices) Difficulty postponing gratification / controlling impulses High pleasure / reward / novelty seeking High risk-taking behavior Exaggerated black and white thinking (safe vs. unsafe) Heightened emotional reactions, fantasy life Difficulty handling social pressures
Risk: MortalityEstimateActual Die from any cause (crime, illness, accident, etc.) in the next year? 18.6 %0.08% Die from any cause (crime, illness, accident, etc.) by age 20? 20.3%0.4% Fischhoff, B., Assessing adolescent decision-making competence, Developmental Review, #28, 2008
We’re not addressing the right issues We’re not addressing the issues in the right way
Lack of effective coping skills Peer influence and “Payoff” Difficulty perceiving risk “Heat of the moment”
THE “CLASSROOM BRAIN” “HEAT OF THE MOMENT” BRAIN
Peer “pressure” inclusion, attention, status, showing off, peer expectations Impulsivity – “Heat of the moment” PAYOFF Impulsivity – High risk-taking Habit Inability to foresee consequences
Classroom presentations may increase knowledge but show little impact on altering student behavior, particularly outside of school Lectures and group discussions inhibit disclosure (insight) Psycho-educational sessions are perceived as preaching Perception of privacy
On-going, insight-oriented approaches that give children the ability to: Develop, practice, and evaluate healthy coping skills Raise self-awareness and the personal commitment to healthy behaviors.
Coping skills development Emotional self-regulation Impulse control techniques Positive pleasure/reward opportunities Appropriate and rewarding novel experiences Social skills and healthy opportunities for inclusion Other key interventions Act as their “frontal lobes” until theirs kicks in Educate teens, parents, teachers, etc.
Individual interventions with children ages 12 – 19 years old are more effective than any other type of interventions, including factual knowledge, classroom-based programs, media efforts, family-based therapy Brauser, D., Vega, C.P. “Individual Interventions May Be More Effective Than Family-Based Therapy in Reducing Teen Alcohol Abuse.” Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, January 2010.
Confidential State and Federal guidelines Avoids conflict of interest (clearer boundaries) Other staff perceived as part of the “establishment” Uniquely trained and certified NJDOE certification On-going professional development More effective (on-going) one-on-one settings Insight-oriented
Contact information: Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge School District AndrewYeager@parkridge.k12.nj.us