Thursday February 14, 2013
In the midst of the public hearings and appeals surrounding the Howard Center’s permit to open a methadone clinic at 364 Dorset Street, questions of clarity arose concerning what contracted services the South Burlington School District receives from the Center. School Board member Martin LaLonde, after having been asked for more information on this from community members, requested that Superintendent David Young provide further details on what the District contracts with the Center.
In Young’s superintendent’s report at the February 6 school board meeting, he explained that, “The Howard Center operates as the designated Chittenden County Health Center and provides a variety of services for students. They have access to skilled providers and professionals that the District needs in order to serve our students.”
The costs of service provided to the District for FY2012, which ended June 30, 2012, was $523,845. In the current year to date, $375,597 has been expended. The current forecast for the full year is $515,750. The school-based clinician portion contract costs for five clinicians amounts to $218,997 and the mentoring portion amounts to $28,273. The rest is for specific students in other Howard Center programs (estimated Medicaid money this year to fund school-based clinician services is $200,000).
Although the scope and costs of services provided by Howard Center varies according to need, some of the services that the SBSD contracts for are school-based clinicians; one at each school for services such as assessment, crisis response, treatment family outreach, and service coordination.
The Howard Center and the District are also partnering to continue the mentoring program at Rick Marcotte Central, Chamberlin, and Orchard schools. There is a half-time mentoring coordinator who oversees the work of 36 mentor-mentees in the program, which is in its second full year of operation.
Other contracted services include intensive special education, therapeutic behavioral intervention and treatment, psychiatric/psychological consultation, pro-social skills training, and family work at The Baird School, which offers an alternative education environment for children ages 6-14.
The Autism Spectrum Program provides intensive, specialized instruction and behavioral treatment and support services year-round for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders age 2-21. The Inclusion Program provides intensive, individualized support to children grades K-12 with serious emotional, behavioral, and academic challenges. The Jean Garvin School, which serves students age 12-18, grades 7-12, provides an educational program “offering unique learning opportunities to inspire personal change and well-being”.
The Centerpoint School serves students 12-18, grades 7-12 who are challenged with emotional, behavioral, mental health, or special learning needs. Although, this is a contracted service as well, Centerpoint is overseen by a collaborative of three agencies: Howard Center, Northeast Family Institute, and Matrix.
SOURCE: Corey Burdick, Correspondent