I-KAN Regional Office of Education #32 and I-KAN Schools applied for and recently received approximately $150,000 in grant funding to provide trauma informed behavioral health services this coming school year. The grant, Greater Illinois Trauma Informed Behavioral Health Services, was made possible through the Illinois Department of Human Services, Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds.
The I-KAN Regional Office of Education operates I-KAN Schools which includes the Regional Alternative Attendance Center (RAAC) and Students All Learning Together (SALT).
SALT programs help students who are lacking high school credits for a variety of reasons including: truancy, dropout, potential dropout and chronic absence, earn course credits toward high school graduation.
The RAAC program offers social/emotional and behavioral support to students who have multiple suspensions or who may be expulsion eligible and uses a trauma-informed model to build resilience and interpersonal awareness in students.
Students in RAAC and SALT are from 13 school districts throughout Iroquois and Kankakee Counties.
The grant funds will enable I-KAN ROE and I-KAN Schools to provide mental and behavioral health interventions to address trauma recovery and other mental health improvements, specifically to mediate the high correlation between family adversity, trauma and violence. Through grant funding, I-KAN Schools will provide screening and assessment, trauma-informed psychoeducation, therapeutic services and service linkage and resource navigation.
“The goal of I-KAN ROE and I-KAN Schools is to provide students with a safe environment and the tools necessary to become contributing members of the community. We want to ensure our students are provided with as much support as possible in order to reach their full potential,” said I-KAN Regional Office of Education Regional Superintendent of Schools Frank Petkunas.
Trauma informed screening and assessment will be a new program at I-KAN Schools. This program will be designed to gather an in-depth understanding of the nature, timing and severity of traumatic events, the effects of those events, current trauma-related symptoms and functional impairment. From that information, I-KAN Schools can address students’ needs.
Trauma informed psychoeducation and psychological first aid will also be a new program at I-KAN Schools. This will include developmentally appropriate education delivered at school in the form of brief interventions with students and families to educate and validate traumatic stress reactions and the family experience.
Trauma specific therapeutic services will be an additional new program at I-KAN Schools. This will include providing comprehensive, evidence-based, development appropriate interventions to youth and their families who have experienced violence and trauma.
Service linkage and resource navigation is currently done at I-KAN Schools but this grant will allow I-KAN Schools the opportunity to expand on these efforts.