Mental Health & High School Curriculum Reports Successes

*NOTE: Don’t miss the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Training happening in Tacoma on October 23:

In the 2016–2017 school year, Washington State became the first entity to formally implement the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource in the United States. The USA-Washington edition of the curriculum resource is developed and in use, and Trainers have prepared educators across the state to deliver this mental health education to youth in our communities.

The Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource was developed by Dalhousie University / IWK Health Centre in Canada. It has been broadly adopted in schools across Canada and in five other countries, with documented increase in mental health literacy and decreased stigma in both students and teachers. The 10 to 12-hour curriculum resource includes comprehensive teaching materials, such as teacher and student tests, lesson plans, and class activities — all of which can be downloaded at no cost.

Please see for information about the curriculum and completed research studies.


More than 1,200 students have completed the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource, confirmed by classroom teaching results provided by their teachers. Many more students have received the curriculum resource than we have results for, and the number will keep growing as educators teach new classes and additional educators join this work.

Improved mental health literacy and decreased stigmatizing attitudes, per aggregated pre- and post-test scores:

· 85% of students increased their mental health knowledge, by an average of 32%
· 66% of students improved their responses to questions related to stigmatizing attitudes about mental disorders


· “Everyone needs to have this training.”
· “I like that it stressed that there is hope.”
· Shared by a teacher: “They all just really liked the fact that it was offered. Several said everyone should have this training.”


138 teachers and education staff across the state have been trained to deliver the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource to their students.

TEACHERS’ COMMENTS about the curriculum resource and training:

· “Excellent curriculum and training. I’m excited to teach this to my students to help them overcome the stigmas associated with mental disorders. Also, our students need to know the signs of mental illness and where to get help.”

· “I liked the personal stories to help us get more insight. The curriculum and background information is great! The number of resources available is wonderful.”

TEACHERS’ COMMENTS after delivering the curriculum resource to their students:

· “What an amazing resource!”
· “Thank you for offering the opportunity to pilot the mental health curriculum. Kudos for working to get it in our high schools!”
· “I used the curriculum and loved it!”

Thank you to educators at these 68 Washington school districts and private schools who have completed training to deliver the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource!

Special appreciation is due to educators at 14 high schools who contributed their time to provide student results: Bethel, Bremerton, Graham-Kapowsin, Issaquah, Kentridge, Lakes, Mark Morris, Moses Lake, Oakland, Reardan, Shelton, Steilacoom, Tumwater, and White River — THANK YOU!

The information you’ve shared enables reporting on the impact and value of the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource, and will inform our continuing work to bring this educational resource to more Washington students.

For more information:

Bringing the Mental Health & High School Curriculum Resource to Washington students is a partnership between the WA Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction’s Project AWARE, the Jordan Binion Project, and CHI Franciscan Health’s Prevent-Avert-Respond (PAR) Initiative.

To learn more, please go to: or contact the Coordination Team:

Mandy Paradise, Project AWARE Program Supervisor, Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction

(360) 725–6248 |

Deborah Binion, Executive Director, Jordan Binion Project

(253) 318–1232 |

Monet Craton, Director, Prevent-Avert-Respond (PAR) Initiative, CHI Franciscan Health

(253) 539–6786 |