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Mental Wellness Triage Grant (MWTG) Background

In 2013, Senate Bill SB 82 enacted the Investment in Mental Health Wellness Act, which afforded California the opportunity to use Mental Health Services Act funds to expand crisis services for individuals who were experiencing a mental health crisis. Senate Bill 833 amended the Investment in Mental Health Wellness Act to specifically authorize the triage grants to provide a complete continuum of crisis intervention services and supports for children aged 21 and under and their families and caregivers.

In July 2017, the Commission dedicated 50 percent of SB 82 Triage funds to children and youth, aged 21 years and under. With the recognition that the effects of mental health crises are evident on school campuses, and the need for a coordinated community response, in November 2017 the Commission directed $30 million to strengthen school-county partnerships to provide crisis intervention services for children in grades pre-kindergarten through 12, with an emphasis on children in grades pre-kindergarten through 3.

Mental Health Student Services Act (MHSSA) Grant Background

As a result of the high-level of response to the school-county triage grants and the implementation of school-based programs through the Triage RFA, the Legislature passed and the Governor signed the 2019 Budget Bill, Senate Bill 75, which included the Mental Health Student Services Act (MHSSA) to establish mental health partnerships between County Mental Health or Behavioral Health Departments and educational entities. The purpose of the MHSSA is to establish additional mental health partnerships between county mental health or behavioral health departments and local education entities. The MHSSA incentivizes partnerships between behavioral health departments and education entities for the purpose of increasing access to mental health services in locations that are easily accessible to students and their families.

In September 2020, the MHSOAC awarded a MHSSA grant to Tulare County Office of Education and Tulare County Department of Mental Health to provide additional mental health services in districts across Tulare County by expanding upon the Triage Grant program. Grants awarded shall be used to provide support services that include, at a minimum, services provided on school campuses, suicide prevention services, drop-out prevention services, placement assistance and service plan for students in need of ongoing services, and outreach to high-risk youth, including foster youth, youth who identify as LGBTQ, and youth who have been expelled or suspended from school.

Mental Wellness Triage Grant

Grant Purposes and Goals

  • Provide triage services to children on school campuses who are experiencing, or who are at risk of experiencing, a mental health crisis
  • Support training for the families/caregivers of children experiencing a mental health crisis
  • Enhance an existing County partnership with school-based programs
  • Expand access on school campuses to a continuum of services and supports for children and their families
  • Create a roadmap for counties and schools across the state to successfully move into an integrated school-based crisis prevention and early intervention model
  • Encourage effective collaboration with the County Mental Health department, schools, parents/caregivers, community organization and/or the private industry
  • Strengthen partnerships between education and community mental health providers in coordinatng and delivering children's wellness services

History of Collaboration between TCOE and HHSA

Since 1994, Tulare County recognized the expertise of TCOE in identifying and assessing the health care needs of its Medi-Cal eligible clients and in planning, coordinating, and monitoring the delivery of preventive and treatment services to meet client needs. The County entered into an agreement with TCOE to collaborate and provide mental health services to students and their families. The successful alliance has continued throughout the years to positively impact the community in providing awareness and access to mental wellness services.