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(412) 409 - 9169

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The Student Initiative

School Based Mental Health

The Student Initiative partners with local school districts to provide individual therapy in a school-based setting. The Student Initiative is its own independent agency and our therapists are not employed by the district. 

We are currently providing school based mental health services for multiple Districts in the Pittsburgh area.

Do you have a child that would benefit from seeing a therapist at school?

What is SAP? 

The Pennsylvania Student Assistance Program (SAP) is a systematic team process used to mobilize school resources to remove barriers to learning. SAP is designed to assist in identifying issues including alcohol, tobacco, other drugs, and mental health issues which pose a barrier to a student’s success. The primary goal of the Student Assistance Program is to help students overcome these barriers so that they may achieve, advance, and remain in school. While Student Assistance Programs exist in other areas of the country, the structure and operation of the program in Pennsylvania is a unique expression of an integrated model serving the needs of Pennsylvania families and students.

To start school-based therapy services with The Student Initiative you need to:

  1. Contact a teacher, guidance counselor or SAP representative within your school and express an interest in the program

  2. If the student meets criteria for SAP assistance and has commercial insurance, they will be given a referred list, The Student Initiative (TSI) will be listed as one of the providers.

  3. Contact The Student Initiative via email ( or phone (412-409-9169 Ext: 2) to schedule an appointment during school hours. 

    1. We will ask for the students full name, birthday and insurance information

    2. You will receive all required intake paperwork which must be completed and returned to begin services

  4. To protect confidentiality and for the purpose of accuracy do not provide the completed paperwork to the school, please return it directly to TSI.

After the initial assessment with our program, your child can begin receiving services during school hours at their home school. Therapy services will continue during breaks and you may choose to have services conducted at the school, the private practice location or virtually.

If your child does not meet the criteria for SAP or they/you would prefer fully private based, please refer to our community based Counseling Initiative program. Students and families of contracted districts are prioritized for services.

We all know that students receiving therapy within the school are much more likely to consistently participate in treatment than those who must travel to an outside facility during after-school hours. Our school-based therapists will capitalize on students’ existing academic and social networks by observing and treating them within their natural environment.


Director of Operations

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