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Mental health recovery takes a team. Sharing information about your child’s recent mental health situation with a health professional at their school can help support you as a parent/guardian and provide your child with the safety, support, and care they need after going home.
Your Child’s Rights
In most cases, the only people who have the right to access to your child’s health information are:
You (parent or guardian)
Your child’s care team (ex. the doctors, nurses, and health care staff involved in your child’s care)
Sharing information about your child’s current mental health with their school can help create and continue a plan of care for your child in this important and critical time. The information shared will be limited to:
Actions they can take to support your child’s safety, recovery, and wellbeing.
What is working to benefit your child’s mental health.
Your child’s safety plan if a safety plan has been made.
Consent to Share Information
In order to share your child’s health information with anyone outside of your child’s care team, you must agree (or consent) to do so. These people must also keep your child’s health information confidential.
How to Give Consent
You can start the consent process by signing an authorization form. This form is available from hospital staff and should be completed before discharge.
School Staff Who Can Access Shared Information
Only a specific school health worker, such as a school nurse, social worker, or psychologist, will be allowed to access it. They will only be able to see details needed to help create a school plan of care for your child. Your child’s health information will not be shared directly with teachers or general school staff. School access will be limited to a period of 90 days.
What Happens Next
After you consent, you can expect to hear from someone from your child’s school to discuss next steps for their care as they return to school. Sharing your child’s health information with the school does not mean that your child will receive special education services, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), or a 504 plan. Talk to your school about the requirements for these types of supports if you feel your child qualifies.
To Learn More
Use the links below to learn more.