As part of their Global Compliance Network training, area teachers are reminded of the importance of greeting/registering every school visitor. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
New teacher training stresses the importance of taking immediate action when encountering an angry school visitor. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
School staff, teachers and coaches are reminded of their role in identifying and quickly reacting to potential threats. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
After each lesson, teachers are asked several questions to test their training. Photo Credit: Jon Craig
The U.S. Surgeon General estimates that one of every five American children suffer from a diagnosable mental illness every year. Photo Credit: Jon Craig

Area Schools Expand Mental Health Training For Teachers

With one of every five American children suffering from a diagnosable mental illness, more area school districts have expanded teacher training for early intervention.

At least 31 school districts in Westchester utilize Global Compliance Network (GCN) training. 

GCN's training includes online and some face-to-face lessons that include emergency response, code of conduct, child abuse and digital security.

For the first time this year, the lessons include a mental health component with questions after the training. Nine lessons take about two hours to complete, according to some local teachers. 

Other local school districts have selected alternative teacher training programs. For example, Mamaroneck Union Free School District and Rye City School District are among the districts that utilize the "SafeSchools" online compliance training.

Sarah Derman, a spokeswoman for the Rye City School District said, "We used to use GCN, but now we use SafeSchools Online Training." 

White Plains is among the 31 districts using GCN's training. White Plains Schools Superintendent Joseph Ricca said, "There were additions related to mental health awareness; however, I think that most of our teachers would have already indicated that they received similar training.

"We talk a great deal about wellness and social/emotional learning in the White Plains Central School District,'' Ricca said.

White Plains' emergency response lesson is customized and more detailed than the GCN version, according to Ricca, who added, "Our Security Team provided a more comprehensive training."

This also was the first year the White Plains teachers participated in "Stop the Bleed" training detailing medical assistance to deal with physical injuries. 

"This was the first year of the StB training with White Plains Hospital," Ricca said. "It has been successful and very well received this far."