Scanlan Center for School Mental Health
A large group of college students walking through campus
Current Projects

Iowa School Mental Health Initiative Project

  • Ebonee Johnson, assistant professor in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health, University of Iowa College of Public Health*
  • Allison Levine, assistant professor in the Department of Counselor Education, University of Iowa College of Education*
  • Jacob Priest, associate professor in the Department of Psychological and Quantitative Foundations, University of Iowa College of Education, and associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine*
Funding Source Scanlan Center for School Mental Health
Duration Summer-Fall 2022

The project will develop an evidence-based, culturally responsive, equity-infused mental health awareness training to enable K-12 stakeholders to recognize and respond to student mental health needs. It will provide professional development for educators and paraprofessionals and extend outreach and training to community members who have a role in student mental health. Project ISMHI will integrate evidence-based practices, including Mental Health First Aid; Cultural Competency & Humility Best Practices; and Trauma Mitigation to develop a streamlined curriculum and train. The project goals include 1) create an innovative, evidence-based curriculum to increase mental health awareness in educators and parents; 2) train educational professionals to (a) recognize signs and symptoms of serious mental illness and emotional disturbance; (b) implement crisis de-escalation and stabilization techniques; and (c) practice self-care strategies for providing mental health supports, and 3) implement a train the trainer model to scale up ISMHI across Iowa schools.

Neolth App Pilot Study

  • TBD
Funding Source TBD
Duration March 2022 - TBD

The Neolth app, an on-demand, personalized, digital tool that aims to build resilience for school populations through access and practice of personalized mindfulness and stress-reduction techniques, and social-emotional learning practices, will be launched with 300 teachers and staff in the Fairfield School District in March 2022 as an individual teacher wellness intervention, with the aim of increasing coping skills, reducing stress, and enhancing resilience. Teachers will evaluate the effectiveness of the app in reaching these desired outcomes. Additionally, an educator and student version of the app will be launched with 150 9th graders and teachers in the Waverly-Shell Rock School District in August 2022. Currently, 57 teachers in this district are completing a pilot evaluation of the app. In conjunction with app use, teachers will implement an educational intervention using guided relaxation activities and a video series that teach social-emotional skills and build resilience.


Affiliated research faculty with the Scanlan Center for School Mental Health