Position: Senior Director of Behavioral Health Services
District: Boston Public Schools
Location: Boston, MA
Andria Amador is the Senior Director of Behavioral Health services in the Boston Public Schools. A school psychologist herself, she supervises all school psychologists in the Boston schools, coordinates professional development, collaborates with numerous community partners, and is the Mental Health Crisis Response leader in all Boston Public Schools. Further, as Senior Director, Andria has served as the principal architect of the BPS Comprehensive Behavioral Health Model (CBHM) in 50 schools. In collaboration with Boston Children’s Hospital and the University of Massachusetts Boston, the aim is to provide a systematic approach to mental health in the schools that includes partnerships with mental health providers and university training programs. The CBHM has district support as a model for replication with the district.
The CBHM is built on the premise that by integrating behavioral health services into schools, we will create safe and supportive learning environments that optimize academic outcomes for all students. This model outlines strategies for the district to provide high-quality behavioral health services that can be equitably accessed by all students. It begins at the school level with universal screening to identify students with elevated risk for developing behavioral health issues, and then organizes and monitors targeted interventions for those with an elevated risk and/or behavioral health needs. Over time, this information will guide district-wide planning and will initiate more effective referral processes with partnering mental health agencies, particularly for those students with the greatest needs.