Need help now?

We don’t provide mental health advice, counselling, or treatment. If you or someone you know is in crisis, contact your local community crisis team. You can also reach out to the Indigenous Hope for Wellness Help Line 1-855-242-3310, the Black Youth Helpline 1-833-294-8650, or Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868.

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Learning and training calendar

We offer training for regulated school mental health professionals (such as OCSWSSW, CPO, or CRPO) who are currently employees of an Ontario school board. The aim of offering training opportunities to Ontario’s regulated school mental health professionals is to enhance the coherence of school mental health service delivery across the province.

Implementation considerations

School Mental Health Ontario (SMH-ON) is an implementation team that focuses on sustainable uptake of its learning and training opportunities. To support this vision the SMH-ON team invites boards to think through a few key implementation considerations prior to registering participants to an event.

Do you know:

  • How this training aligns with the priorities within the board mental health strategy?
  • How this intervention fits within the mental health services in the board?
  • Who the intended audience is?
  • What training strategy will be adopted? Is it self-directed, train-the-trainer, etc.?
  • How clinicians will use the intervention?
  • What processes (e.g. referral) and structures (e.g. data collection, reporting) need to be adapted to integrate the intervention?
  • How the clinical supervisor will support the team in the implementation of the intervention?
  • How clinicians will measure the impact of the intervention on student outcomes?

Do you know:

  • How this intervention aligns with your model of mental health services and pathways to care?
  • How this intervention will be integrated within your existing referral process?
  • How you will gather data, generate reports and hold team members accountable in the use of the intervention?
  • What are the expectations to participate in a supervisor webinar?
  • How you will support your team in the implementation of the intervention?

Do you know:

  • Why your board is adopting this intervention?
  • How this training fits within your board’s model of service?
  • Enough about the intervention to see how it will enhance your work with students?
  • How you will adopt this intervention in your work with students?
  • What might get in the way in implementing the intervention?
  • What the expectations are regarding data collection, reporting, and accountability?

Equity and culturally responsive considerations

To ensure that services offered by school mental health professionals are accessible to all students the SMH-ON team invites boards to think through a few key considerations prior to registering participants to an event.

Have you:

  • Considered the characteristics of student population in your board?
  • Engaged with managers, supervisors, clinical staff, and students to learn about who is/might be underserved in the current service delivery model?
  • Identified potential obstacles to accessing services, for underserved groups?
  • Reflected with team on ways to ensure access for underserved groups?
  • Adapted the process as needed to remove the identified barriers?
  • Incorporated the adapted/revised processes in the pathways to care?
  • Shared the adapted/revised pathways to care with all staff?

Have you:

  • Explored your own culture, beliefs and values to understand how they may impact your work with students?
  • Accessed clinical supervision, peer consultation, or a community of practice to support your learning and practice?
  • Acknowledged systemic impacts that affect marginalized students, and work to recognize and address them?
  • Incorporated active validation of students’ cultural context and how that impacts their understanding of their situation?
  • Committed to working from a strength-based perspective?
  • Recognized potential cultural differences in the perception of mental health by students and their families?
  • Empowered students to believe in change but been sensitive to the reality of systemic oppression?

Interested in a training?

Consult with your supervisor/mental health leader to access registration links.

Learning and training opportunities

We  have several pre-recorded sessions available:

  • Enhancing our equity efforts
  • Introduction to measurement-based care webinar
  • Virtual care 101 for child and youth mental health
  • Virtual care implementation webinar
  • Evidence based practice in virtual care webinar
  • School-based interventions related to student cannabis use – training series
  • Suicide risk assessment – 1 2, and 3

To access these recorded sessions, contact your supervisor/manager.

Brief Digital Interventions are single session, online interventions that can be used as part of a brief intervention model.  The four modules teach self-regulation and problem-solving skills and are appropriate for students with mild to moderate mental health difficulties.

Time commitment:

BDI training consists of an online self-directed learning module, which takes about 3 hours to complete.


Emerging evidence suggests that single-session treatments may be effective in helping youth deal with anxiety and conduct issues by focusing on broad principles of change (i.e. solving problems, feeling calm, changing thoughts, trying the opposite).

School mental health professionals can provide BDIs to students to be completed on their own time, between their sessions. Each BDI takes between 20-45 minutes to complete. Students aged 10 and up may be able to complete the BDIs on their own, while younger students may need parental assistance.

Everyone who has completed the self-directed learning is welcome to join the BDI Learning Collaboratives.

Ask your mental health lead/ manager to contact Tracy Weaver ( to register for the BDI online training.


2023-2024 virtual trainings

Brief Intervention for School Clinicians (BRISC)

BRISC for Clinicians

BRISC (Brief Intervention for School Clinicians) is an evidence-based, structured intervention that focuses on problem-solving and skill building with students. 

Time requirement:

1.5-day training; attendance is required for both days.

Training dates:

Ask your mental health lead/ manager to check SMHO portal calendar for the upcoming training dates.


BRISC is an engagement, triage, and brief intervention strategy that is based on CBT principles and well-suited to students with mild to moderate mental health problems. The student’s goals are addressed using one or more research-based strategies matched to student needs. 

BRISC is delivered over approximately four sessions and emphasizes both social-emotional and academic outcomes.  

BRISC includes initial and follow-up assessment, as well as ongoing progress monitoring to assist the clinicians in their decision-making process. 


Clinicians must use BRISC with at least two (2) students after the training. 

Managers/supervisors/MHL should also take part in the BRISC training, in addition to the supervisor training.

Managers/supervisors/MHL will support the uptake of the intervention in their school boards. 

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy - Foundational Training - 2-day training (delivered by Qualia/WLU)

This beginning level training is to enhance knowledge about CBT interventions and how to incorporate it into school practice.  

It provides the foundational knowledge that underscores effective school-based interventions and is highly recommended for all school mental health professionals. 

Time requirement: 

2 days, participation in both days is required 

Training dates:  

Ask your mental health lead/ manager to check the SMHO portal calendar for the upcoming training dates. Contact Barbara Ward ( and Elizabeth Paquette ( to access the training waitlist.


Facilitated by Qualia Counseling Services in partnership with the Faculty of Social Work, Professional Development Office, at Wilfrid Laurier University, this workshop provides introductory training in short-term, brief CBT. 

It focuses on the five core interventions:  

  • five factor model,  
  • thoughts records,  
  • evidence technique,  
  • cognitive distortions, and  
  • imagery interventions.  

The course also presents interventions specific for adolescent anxiety/depression symptoms that include risk (i.e. self-harm, suicidality):  

  • exposure,  
  • response prevention,  
  • behavioural activation,  
  • experiments and  
  • caregiver coaching.  

CBT Training From an Identity Affirming Approach for School Mental Health Professionals (Coming in 2023-2024)

More information to follow.

Supporting Transition Resilience of Newcomer Groups (STRONG)

STRONG is a 10-session, evidence-informed, school-based group intervention for newcomer youth (K-12th grades) to support their transitions of migration and settlement. 

Time requirement: 

2-day training 

Training Dates: 

November 28th & 29th, 2023
February 12th & 13th, 2024 

Ask your mental health lead/ manager to check the SMHO portal calendar for the upcoming training dates. Contact Barbara Ward ( and Elizabeth Paquette ( to access the training waitlist.


STRONG is an evidence-informed, school-based intervention for newcomer youth (K-12th grades) to support their transition to a new school and community. 

STRONG is intended for students experiencing psychological distress or difficulties functioning at home, school, or in their community, often related to the adversities and trauma experienced during the transitions of migration and settlement. 


Clinicians are offered optional topic-specific consultation calls (MHLs/Supervisors are welcome to join as well). Please connect with your Board MH Lead or Manager for information on upcoming dates and registration.


By participating in the training, clinicians are expected to offer a group intervention at least once before the end of the school year.

Questions about training opportunities?

Please email Barbara Ward ( and Elizabeth Paquette (