Dear Parents/Guardians,

Our school is interested in the behavioral and emotional health of our students. This year, El Capitan High School will be participating in a brief universal screening survey for measuring behavioral and emotional strengths and weaknesses in adolescents. All students who agree to participate will complete a short survey twice a year during part of one class period during regularly scheduled school activities. This survey has been approved by El Capitan High School, in collaboration with researchers from the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB).

Assessing the behavioral and emotional functioning of adolescents helps to promote student success. Academic difficulties, along with challenges associated with developing and maintaining positive relationships with others, can be the result of underlying behavioral and emotional factors. When caught early, any difficulties can be addressed before negatively affecting an adolescent. Your child does not have to participate. Participation in the survey is voluntary, and opting out will not impact on your child’s academic status or access to services. Prior to taking the survey, all students will be informed that participation is voluntary and that opting out will in no way impact their standing at school. All information collected will be kept confidential. The school counselor at your child’s school will receive the results of the survey. If your child responds to the survey in a way that indicates possible risk for behavioral, emotional, or social challenges that impact school performance, they will meet with their school counselor.

Their counselor will then determine if your child would be interested in, or benefit from, any additional support services so that they feel like an important and engaged member of our school. This could include extra programs, services, clubs, campus activities, or communicating with teachers and guardians about how to help them be successful at school. You will be informed before any further assessments, interventions, or services are conducted or implemented. If you do not want your child to complete the survey or to participate in the research, please send the bottom portion of this letter back to your child’s school. Your child’s participation in the survey will signal to us your acceptance for your child to participate in the school’s behavioral screening process. You may have your child withdraw participation at any time.

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