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James Plastiras Director of Public Information New York State Office of Mental Health 518-474-6540 james.plastiras@omh.ny.gov

May 07, 2019

New York State Recognizes Lansingburgh Central School District for Prioritizing a Culture of Mental Wellness Amongst Students and Staff

Capital Region School District Honored for its Dedication to Trauma-Sensitive Approaches and Collaborative Engagement to Promote Children’s Mental Health

Albany, NY – New York State is honoring the Lansingburgh Central School District in Rensselaer County with the 2019 ‘What’s Great in our State’ School District Award.

The award recognizes Lansingburgh Central School District (LCSD) for its commitment to addressing the student mental health challenges that urban school districts often face. Its holistic, trauma-sensitive approach to learning has created a culture of prioritizing social-emotional health and awareness for both its students and staff.

“The Lansingburgh Central School District is a shining example of how New York’s individual school districts can work to support a young individual through his or her emotional and social development,” said New York State Office of Mental Health Commissioner Dr. Ann Sullivan. “Through its partnership with the county mental health department, its efforts to improve the mental wellness of staff, and its dedication to trauma-sensitive approaches with youth, the Lansingburgh District stands out for its commitment to mental wellness. We are delighted to provide this recognition and thank all our honorees for their hard work and commitment to children’s mental health.”

The Lansingburgh Central School District was presented with the award at the annual ‘What’s Great in our State 2019’ event on May 7th in Rotterdam. The celebration recognizes the individuals and programs that are successfully advancing the cause of children’s mental health in New York State.

The district is applauded for its partnership with the Rensselaer County Department of Mental Health which established two satellite mental health clinics, providing students and families with individual and family counseling. LCSD has also added support service staff to allow increased prevention programming, including an evidenced-based Social-Emotional Learning Curriculum taught to students from Pre-K through 6th grade.

LCSD emphasizes staff wellness too, providing mindfulness training to faculty and stressing the importance of practicing self-care to mitigate the effects of stress. It has even incorporated a self-care staff day where teachers learn yoga, meditation, and receive massages. 

Additionally, Lansingburgh’s Parenting Village links community agencies with parents and families to support a child’s cognitive and social emotional development through family engagement, cohesiveness, and learning. 

“Our Trauma Sensitive Schools (TSS) Initiative is about putting relationships first. It requires us to have an understanding that many of our students come from high-stress environments, and it’s our job to create a learning environment conducive to meeting their social-emotional and academic needs,” said Dana Roman, Lansingburgh Director of School-Community Partnerships. “This begins with training faculty to take mindful approaches when responding to students and helping them adjust how they react to student behavior. Receiving this honor is truly validating for our faculty, staff and administration. We’ve put a lot of hard work into our TSS Initiative and it’s great having that work acknowledged.”  


For more information on Lansingburgh Central School District, visit https://www.lansingburgh.org/LCSD

What’s Great in Our State’

The ‘What’s Great in Our State’ event coincides with Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week, a national movement that seeks to raise awareness about the importance of children’s mental health and to show that positive mental health is essential to a child’s healthy development from birth.

‘What’s Great in Our State’ started in 2010 and has expanded and evolved. It features a Governor’s proclamation declaring the week as Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week, a ceremony recognizing our honorees, keynote speakers and an art show featuring artwork created by children receiving services from New York State’s mental health system.

This year’s celebration includes an expanded format that combines education, awareness and recognition. The new, full-day forum adds three breakout workshops to the schedule, focusing on the work being done to build Systems of Care across New York State. The expanded format uses funding from a SAMHSA grant dedicated to strengthening this cross-systems effort.

The event is sponsored by six New York State agencies: The Office of Mental Health, the Council on Children and Families, the Department of Health, the Education Department, the Office of Children and Family Services and the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services. A number of children’s mental health advocacy organizations are also heavily involved in the planning process.

For more information on the partners involved with this year’s ‘What’s Great in Our State’ event, visit https://conta.cc/2W5OkOf  


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