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PCPA and ELC Report on Educational Services for Children in Partial Hospital
April 21, 2004

Since 1998 PCPA has been surveying its child and adolescent partial hospital provider members to learn about client and treatment profiles and to explore the ways in which education services are provided to children in treatment. At the same time the Education Law Center (ELC) has been reviewing PCPA findings and surveying families about their perception of education services to their children in partial hospital programs.

Findings of the Report
Roughly 11,000 children and adolescents received care at approximately 70 partial hospital programs in 2002. Children who attend these programs are classic “interagency or multi-system” children – they need an intensive day mental health program, but they also need quality education. Many members report effective and collaborative treatment and education service models, though neither the Department of Public Welfare (DPW) nor the Pennsylvania Department of Education monitor service or define funding structures to ensure that these children receive the appropriate special or regular education services they need.

Release and Reaction
The PCPA/ELC report was sent to the Secretaries of Education and Public Welfare as well as to the governor and his Cabinet on Children and Families. The report has stimulated very promising responses from the state’s leadership. The Executive Director of the cabinet has convened a joint Department of Education and DPW, Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) team to address the issues raised in the report. Governor Rendell, at the press conference introducing the new Commission to the Children’s Cabinet, made reference to this initiative as a first task for the commission. In a series of PCPA conference calls members have begun to identify effective models for collaborative and integrated treatment and education services to guide the work of the state. The complete report can be found from the link. The report will be released to the public at an April 29 press conference at the Capitol in Harrisburg

For more information contact Connell O’Brien.

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