Educators Need Psychological First Aid Training
Robin Gurwitch (bio) recommends training all staff in PFA so anyone can be a resource for students in need.
There was a void in our field of how to help educators provide services to children after trauma, whether it's specific to that student or whether it affects the whole school community. So we wanted to look and develop something that was easy to learn, that made sense, and could actually have potential benefits for those that we're providing it to.
If something's happened in a school, whether it's a school shooting, whether it's a tornado that's destroyed the school, whatever the crisis event may be, even the death of a family member that's unique to that one child, there's no guarantee that the children are going to go to the social worker or the school psychologist, or someone else, because maybe they don't know them.
I may go to my math teacher. I may go to my resource officer. I may go to my English teacher, because it's who the child may feel most comfortable with. And once everyone in the school system understands psychological first aid, then everybody can provide it. And if the child may need that extra bit of help, that extra mental health intervention, then the school social worker or the school psychologist can serve as a wonderful resource or community resources that people can refer them to.
Excerpted from an interview at CBITS Summit 2012 in Santa Monica, CA.