Thursday, November 21, 2019

Bellevue SD Dumps Check Yourself Mental Health Screener

My email to the Board this morning:

Dear Directors,

(Yes, I know - how can you miss me if I won't go away. Soon.)

I just wanted to make you aware of a couple of changes that have come in the use of the Check Yourself mental health screener for middle school students.

1) Bellevue SD has dropped it completely. They are now using this SOS model in which the screener is an appropriate length (about 6-8 questions) AND where the teacher talks to kids about mental health issues in the classroom and the students learn about recognizing issues both for themselves AND classmates. Plus, a lot less personal student data going out into the world.

My understanding is that Bellevue made the change because they were worried about student data privacy issues.
2) The person I am working with on this issue believes that both districts and King County are NOT being clear to parents that using of the Check Yourself screener when it is given in schools by school staff then make the results fall under FERPA, not HIPAA. That needs to be made explicitly clear to parents and no one should just say, "It's HIPAA compliant" when it simply does not fall under HIPAA.

3) I remind you that SPS and other districts know that they had been violating federal education regulation PPRA via the Department of Education and were forced to change the notification procedure.

I urge you to follow Bellevue's lead and switch to a less invasive screener that allows kids to not just think of themselves but to watch out for friends and classmates.

Melissa Westbrook
Seattle Schools Community Forum blog

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Melissa said: (Yes, I know. How can you miss me if I won't go away. Soon.)

Melissa - we already miss you. That's the fun thing about technology. You can live anywhere and still be close. We hope you continue with this blog. You've created a community. And you're our community. I hope you understand how important this is to so many. Wherever you are planning on moving, after some time for moving in and adjusting, perhaps you'll miss us too?