Mental Health Department
Introduction to Services & Counseling
The Mental Health Department of the school is composed of therapists from a diverse range of disciplines, including social work, music therapy, art therapy, movement/dance therapy, psychology, and DIRFloortime®. All clinical staff work with the students from a relational psychology model, providing individual and small group counseling, music therapy, art therapy, movement/dance therapy, support groups and case conference, consultation to families, psychoeducation, and advocacy in transitional planning. In addition, clinical staff can provide consultation in the classrooms, lead staff process groups and didactic trainings, and are active in case conferences as a vital members of each student’s interdisciplinary team. The mission of the department is in keeping with the therapeutic model of Rebecca School which believes that learning and creativity are maximized within a framework of safe, genuine and secure relationships. The department utilizes the Developmental Individual-Difference Relationship (DIRFloortime®) model developed by Dr. Stanley Greenspan. This therapeutic approach proceeds from the core tenet that relationships are the foundation of effective psychological and psychosocial interventions, academic learning, and social development.
OUR STUDENTS AND THE REBECCA SCHOOL MODEL
The students who attend Rebecca School have neurodevelopmental delays in relating & communicating, including autism spectrum disorders and pervasive developmental disorders. The academic program places the relationships each staff member has with the children at the fore regardless of the neurodevelopmental level of the student. Since most of the students have difficulties with communicating and relating, the clinical and academic staff use the DIRFloortime® model in their work with students to enhance students’ abilities in self-regulation, frustration tolerance, problem-solving, meaningful social interactions, and joyful, creative play.
Social Work Services
A social worker is assigned to every family at Rebecca school. Social workers provide ongoing support to families and serve as the connection between the home and school team. Social workers communicate regularly with families and provide many services including the following:
· Individual and family counseling
· Referrals to outside services and agencies
· Accompanying parents and advocating for them at IEP meetings
· Accompanying parents to school visits
· Providing home visits
· Providing time sensitive assistance in case of emergencies
· Collaborating with other relevant professionals working with students and families
· Providing support to teams working with students and families
· Providing sibling support groups
· Providing parent support groups
· Parent education and trainings are also provided by the social workers in conjunction with other departments at the school.
CONTINUOUS TRAINING AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Rebecca School clinicians are distinguished for their focus on continuous clinical training and professional development. In addition to attending a wide range of conferences, the clinical staff are active participants in professional presentations. The staff provide in-house, didactic seminars, as well as, attend weekly staff developmental presentations on a wide variety of interdisciplinary topics and related DIRFloortime® intervention.
EXTERNSHIPS, INTERNSHIPS & Post-Doc Fellowships
Rebecca School externship, internship & fellowship programs are distinguished for their focus on clinical training and professional development for our trainees. Trainee’s receive didactic seminars within the prinicpals of the school and related clinical interventions, as well as an additional, trainings that are provided for all departments (on Fridays only). Other opportunities include observation and participation in a weekly case conference meetings. Didactic seminars are provided by senior clinicians from Rebecca School, as well as by outside speakers with expertise in child/adolescent development, DIRFloortime® and the treatment of neurodevelopmental delays.
Supervision is provided by highly experienced clinicians. Trainees receive a minimum of one hour of individual supervision and one hour of group supervision weekly. In addition to supervision and training provided by licensed clinicians, you have the opportunity to observe other disciplines, including music therapists, art therapists, movement/dance therapists, social workers, and DIRFloortime® consultants. Trainees are encouraged to adopt their own personal style for conducting psychotherapy within this developmental, relational model. The videotaping of sessions is commonly used as an additional training tool that helps trainees deepen their clinical skills and self-confidence.
Interested candidates should send a letter of interest and resume. Candidates should consult their Directors of Clinical Training regarding the start date for submitting applications. Applications should be mailed or emailed to:
Bonnie Waring, Clinical Coordinator
40 E. 30 Street, NY, NY 10016
Additional information about Rebecca School can be obtained through our website: www.rebeccaschool.org, or by calling our office: 212-810-4120 x 248.