Emotional Backpack Project

Children carry a backpack almost everywhere they go, and if you look inside it, you may find school supplies, snacks, clothing, a phone, or other items that help them to feel secure or prepared to handle situations. While those things are important to include in a child’s physical backpack, it is equally important to fill a child’s Emotional Backpack with information, ideas, words, thoughts and other self-care tools that will help them to build and support a solid foundation for their emotional wellness and mental health.

The Emotional Backpack Project will teach youth, parents, and educators about mental health and local resources so that all of our children can grow up to lead happy, healthy lives. Find great resources in the Toolkits linked above, and watch Public Service Announcements with youth to help spread awareness about mental health.

Additional training modules, lesson plans, and activities are available to schools to help infuse mental health in the campus culture. The training modules also fulfill the requirements of SB 460*. Use the link above to learn more about becoming an Emotional Backpack School.

Watch a video about Emotional Backpack:

For additional information, please contact the Center for School Behavioral Health.

* Senate Bill (SB) 460, passed by the 83rd Texas Legislature in 2013, requires school districts to provide teachers, administrators and staff with training in mental health intervention and suicide prevention to help them identify red flags in a child’s behavior and respond effectively. House Bill (HB) 2186, passed by the 84th Texas Legislature in 2015, requires suicide prevention training for all new school district and open-enrollment charter school educators annually and for existing school district and open-enrollment charter school educators on a schedule adopted by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) by rule.