Olentangy is the first school district in the state of Ohio to hold the certification.
On Thursday, August 10, Olentangy Schools became the first school district in the state of Ohio to hold a certification as a behavioral health provider under the Ohio Mental Health and Addiction Services Board.
By becoming OhioMHAS certified, Olentangy Schools can further ensure that services provided to students through school social workers and mental health specialists follow all the requirements as directed by the Ohio Revised Codes related mental health services.
“Olentangy wants to be on the forefront of providing the best educational experience to our students,” shared Board of Education Vice President Brandon Lester, who spearheaded the addition of an ad hoc board committee in July 2022 to further enhance and expand the district’s student mental health and well-being work. “Similar to how we incorporated services for students with dyslexia before Ohio introduced House Bill 436, this certification is one way we are staying ahead of the curve in ensuring qualified professionals provide appropriate services to support student mental health.”
Olentangy’s Director of Student Well-Being, Dr. Allisha Berendts, adds, “Students can’t learn to the best of their ability if they are struggling with mental health. Our ultimate goal in receiving this certification is to alleviate barriers to learning so that we can fulfill our mission to facilitate maximum learning for every student.”
By obtaining this certification, Olentangy Schools will be eligible for expanded funding opportunities, and state-level oversight verifies that the highest standards are employed when providing services to students. The types and level of services provided by Olentangy Schools will not change as a result of the OhioMHAS certification.
What is Ohio Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS)?
OhioMHAS is the state-level department that oversees the mental and behavioral health services provided throughout the state of Ohio. Similar to the oversight provided to schools by the Ohio Department of Education, OhioMHAS ensures compliance with policies, procedures, documentation, and quality assurances related to mental and behavioral health. Contact Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (OhioMHAS) Licensure and Certification at 614-466-2596.