TeenHope Emotional-Wellness Screenings

  • Dear Parents/Guardians:

    Your student’s emotional and physical health are key factors in their school performance and how well they engage in relationships with others. As such, the Elizabethtown Area School District and fifteen other school districts in Lancaster County are again partnering with TeenHope (under the Samaritan Counseling Center) to offer a VOLUNTARY, OPT-IN mental health education and screening to all ninth-grade students. TeenHope will use the PHQ-9 and GAD screening tools to identify risk factors related to depression, anxiety, and suicide ideation. The screening is voluntary and confidential. Thanks to generous community contributions, TeenHope screenings are provided at no cost to parents or the District.

    Often, the screening will confirm that your student is experiencing normal teenage transitions. However, if your student does screen at risk or requests additional support, TeenHope will assist in identifying resources to share with your student. Additionally, based on Samaritan Counseling Center’s legal counsel, parents/guardians will not receive the results of the screenings without consent from the student.

    TeenHope will screen all pre-registered students in GRADE NINE ONLY on January 31 and February 1, 2023. The screening is completed in a manner that assures only your child and the mental health professional see your student’s response. All screening results are confidential, and discussions with your student are general mental health conversations, not therapeutic in nature.

    This screening opportunity is valuable for all students. To have your child screened, parents/guardians must complete the online Opt-In Form by January 6, 2023. If you do not wish to have your child participate, no action is required.

    These steps are what your teen will experience on the day of the screening:

    • Listen to a presentation about mental and emotional health and well-being.
    • Students complete a 5-minute questionnaire about symptoms of depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation.
    • All students meet with the TeenHope Case Manager after the screening to discuss general mental and emotional well-being and a general overview of their screening.
    • Students screened at-risk are encouraged to connect with a trusted adult in and out of school for additional support and are provided with community recommendations.
    • All students are given the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, and we encourage all families to have this information on their phones.
    • Based on Samaritan Counseling Center legal counsel, parents/guardians will only be contacted if their student signs a consent form allowing information to be shared with parents and school counselors. Parents/Guardians will not be contacted if your student is not found to need additional mental health services.

    It is up to you to decide if you want to obtain additional services for your student. TeenHope provides referral information directly to parents. In addition, Samaritan Counseling Center is available to provide assistance and financial support to parents interested in pursuing mental health services for their student.

    Please do not hesitate to call your child’s school counselor at 717-367-1533 or the Samaritan Counseling Center at 717-560-9969 if you have any questions. Additional information regarding the screenings

    Additional Resources: