Frequently Asked Questions about YScreen
Why is YScreen offered to all 9th grade students (and 7th grade students at select sites)?
YScreen and its partner schools offer YScreen to all 9th grade students because the transition to high school can be challenging for many youth, and students are experiencing numerous physical and emotional changes. This is also a time when teens may turn less to parents/adults when troubled.
Beginning in spring of 2023, YScreen has also been offered to all 7th graders at select sites. This was piloted after a review of past data showed that 70% of students reported that their anxiety/depression symptoms started before high school. By offering the program to students at two points in time (7th and 9th grade), we aim to provide hope, guidance, and peace of mind to more youth and families, and prevent years of unnecessary struggles.
Why is YScreen not offered to ALL students?
YScreen IS available to all students in grades 10th-12th by referral. These referrals can be initiated by a parent or guardian, school staff, or the student themself. However, YScreen is not currently offered universally to youth in grades 10th-12th due to the cost and staff time which would be required.
What are the steps in the YScreen process?
The basic steps of the YScreen process are 1) Educating youth, parents, and school staff, 2) Obtaining consent, 3) Conducting the screening through a questionnaire and one-on-one conversation between the youth and YScreen staff, 4) Identifying youth who are struggling, and 5) Assisting parents in securing mental health services for their child.
YScreen does more than identify youth who are struggling. The process also educates youth about the importance of paying attention to their mental health, helps them identify their support networks and coping skills, and for many provides peace of mind that what they are experiencing is normal.
YScreen process steps are explained in more detail HERE.
What if the parent/guardian consents but the youth doesn’t want to participate?
We believe screening should be voluntary. On the day of screening, youth are given the choice whether or not to participate. In the event that a parent/guardian has provided their consent but the youth declines, the parent/guardian who completed the consent form will be notified of their child’s decision not to participate.
How long does the screening process take?
It generally takes around 5 minutes for youth to complete the screening questionnaire. Afterwards, the youth meets one on one with YScreen staff to review their results and also have a brief discussion (typically lasting 10-15 minutes) about their stressors, strengths, coping skills, and support system. If no concerns have been identified, the youth is provided information about available resources, and the process is complete.
If concerns are identified, either through the questionnaire or during the debriefing conversation, the youth then meets with a clinician for a more in-depth discussion about the symptoms and challenges they are reporting. The length of this clinical interview varies depending on the complexity of the youth’s needs, but it is generally around 30 minutes.
If the clinician determines that the youth may benefit from additional evaluation and services, they will contact the parent/guardian to explain the concerns which have been identified and provide information about local mental health resources.
Are YScreen results confidential?
Yes. The screening process is conducted in a private setting. The screening results are not shared with partnering school staff unless the parent/guardian consents. With parent/guardian consent, the results of the clinical interview portion of the screening process will be shared with the youth’s identified mental health provider. If a student discloses that they are currently a safety risk to themselves or others, YScreen staff will follow established protocols to ensure the safety of all involved.
Do youth who participate in YScreen receive a diagnosis?
No. The screening process only detects the presence of symptoms of mental health disorders. These symptoms are then shared with the youth’s parent/guardian so they can decide whether to pursue a full assessment with a mental health care provider.
Does the YScreen program provide treatment?
No. YScreen staff do not provide treatment directly as this is beyond the scope of the program. However, we may make a referral for further evaluation by a mental health provider or for support by a school counselor. We then work to connect youth and their parents to the needed resources within the community. All possible treatment decisions are made by families in close consultation with a health professional after the completion of the screen.
Can I see the questionnaire?
Yes. If you wish to review the screening tool, please contact the YScreen Program at 920-906-6571.
How is YScreen funded?
The majority of YScreen’s funding comes from local businesses, foundations, and service clubs. Visit our YScreen Supporting Organizations page to view all current donors. Our largest single source of funds, the FDL United Way, provides approximately 25% of our annual funding needs. The funds provided to YScreen via the FDL County Budget allocation ($9,000 in 2022) constitutes roughly 8% of our annual budget, and is our only source of governmental, tax-funded income. As a result, the financial support we receive from local businesses, foundations, service clubs, and individuals who are committed to improving the lives of youth and their families here in Fond du Lac County is vital to the continuation of our program.
Learn more by visiting our Donate to YScreen page.