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Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge High School.

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Presentation on theme: "Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge High School."— Presentation transcript:

1 Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge High School

2  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

3 Escalating problems Demand on schools to address them


5 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

6 Peer acceptance Inclusion/Attention / Status / Confidence (social) Coping strategy To alter feelings / experiences Experimentation / curiosity / rebellion

7  Alcohol  Marijuana  Prescription medication  Pain medications: OxyContin , Vicodin , Percodan   Benzodiazepines: Xanax , Valium   Sleep medications: Ambien , Lunesta   ADHD medications: Ritalin , Adderall   Heroin  Cocaine  OTC cold medication (“triple C’s”)  Inhalents  Club drugs

8  2.4 million persons aged 12 and older initiated nonmedical use of prescription pain relievers such as OxyContin® within the past year.  SAMHSA's National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2005


10 COPE AnxietyDepressionPainLonelinessAnger

11  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.


13  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



16 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



19 Risk = Probability x Consequence

20 Risk = Probability x Consequence x Payoff (Benefits, rewards, secondary gains, etc.) Tangible, immediate reward > Abstract, future consequences

21 Probability x Consequence x Payoff x “Heat of the moment” RISK ASSESSMENT


23 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

24  We’re not addressing the right issues  We’re not addressing the issues in the right way

25 Lack of effective coping skills Peer influence and “Payoff” Difficulty perceiving risk “Heat of the moment”


27  Peer “pressure”  inclusion, attention, status, showing off, peer expectations  Impulsivity – “Heat of the moment”  PAYOFF  Impulsivity – High risk-taking  Habit  Inability to foresee consequences

28  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

29 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.

30  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.

31  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.

32 42 CFR Part 2 FERPA

33  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

34 Contact information: Andrew Yeager Student Assistance Coordinator Certified School Psychologist Park Ridge School District

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