Early Childhood Mental Health

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Early Childhood Mental Health

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The Collaborative for Educational Services (CES) Early Childhood Program offers Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (ECMH) Services for Hampshire and Franklin Counties through our subcontract with Behavioral Health Network (BHN) in Springfield, funded by the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (EEC).

With parental consent, we provide support to parent/caregivers and early educators regarding child development and behavior. Classroom assessments are also available to support early educators around these areas, along with classroom climate and dynamics.

About Our Program

The goal of this program is to help early educators and parents/caregivers support healthy social and emotional development for children enrolled in programs supported by the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (EEC).

Through promotion, prevention, and intervention, we aim to:

  • Build the capacity of early education and care program staff to address the needs of children who exhibit behavioral challenges
  • Attend to the social-emotional needs of children so they are ready to learn and be successful in their early education
  • Reduce the number of children who are suspended or expelled from EEC-funded programs
  • Promote collaboration for better access to supportive services for children and their families

Click below to view a video presentation of the Early Childhood Mental Health Consulation Virtual Services we offer (running time: 15 mins):

thumbnail image of ECMH powerpoint slide

Who is Eligible?

Children birth to age 12 who are enrolled in EEC licensed childcare, or out-of-school time programs in Hampshire and Franklin Counties

What is the Cost?

There are no costs to providers or families, and no insurance requirements.

How the Program Works

We have resumed our support with educators on-site and in-person. We are providing in-person observations based on the individual comfort level of child care programs and schools. During FY22, we intend to provide a hybrid model in which we do the majority of observations in-person and consultations with educators and families virtually.

  • Our Program Directors and parent will complete a Consultation Referral Form. Click here to download the form. Please fax the form to Sarah Lusardi, Clinical Supervisor, at 413.586.1725 or email slusardi@collaborative.org with "referral" in the subject line.
  • One of our clinicians will conduct virtual consultation with the educators and parents to create a team support plan to help the child be successful in their school setting.
  • We meet with parents and teachers together to create a support plan which includes strategies to help the child at home, in school, and in the community.
  • Referrals for speech, language, and sensory screenings; or for ongoing therapy, may be included in the plan.
  • Whole classroom and program wide services are also available and will be delivered virtually.
  • The time frame for services is typically 3-6 months.

For Parents

We know that you are the expert on your child. This is why your involvement in this process is critical. You will be asked to participate in a comprehensive assessment to provide information about your child's history, strengths, temperament, and development. You will also be asked to join the early educator or childcare provider and our clinician, in planning and trying out possible solutions.

The Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation Team at CES 

We are social workers and early childhood development specialists with years of experience in counseling, consulting, teaching, parenting, training, and connecting with community resources. We are passionate about building resilience for children and families, and support early educators in this pursuit.

Find out more about:

For more information, contact: 
IECMH Clinical Supervisor and Pyramid Model Coach