In 1957, a pilot program for prevention of "school dysfunction" was begun in the primary grades of one Rochester, New York school. Over a period of 17 years, the project developed screening procedures for early identification of children with school adjustment problems and trained nonprofessionals, generally mothers, as "child aides" in school-based services under the direction and supervision of a team of mental health professionals. By 1974, the program had been extended to 17 schools (among the total of 45 elementary schools in the Rochester City School District), comprising a "federation of like-minded programs" that share basic concepts but differ among the schools in some aspects of staffing and service.
This book is a description of the undertaking, presented in narrative form, covering the evolving service characteristics, the research aspects, case vignettes, and reactions to the program of parents, teachers, principals, and nonprofessional aides.
The senior author is Professor of