Health and Wellness
- Grief Support
- Mental Health
- Substance Abuse
- Depression and Suicide
- Intervention & Referral Services
COVID-19 and School Attendance
It is the responsibility of parents/guardians to monitor their children’s health every morning before attending school. If your child shows signs of illness, please keep your child at home. If there are signs or symptoms of COVID-19, we recommend that you have your child tested.
COVID-19 symptoms are as follows:
· Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
· New loss of taste or smell
· Muscle or body aches
· Rigors (shivers)
· Sore throat
· Congestion or runny nose
· Nausea or vomiting
Per BRRSD protocol, a student who tests positive for COVID-19 must stay at home for 5 days (day 0 is the first day of symptoms or positive test) and wear a mask for 5 days upon return to school. There is no requirement for family members or other close contacts to quarantine as long as they are healthy. Please contact the School Nurse if you have any further questions.
Feeling emotionally overwhelmed is a natural response to any sudden loss of life experienced within the school community. Helping our adolescent population work through the intense feelings that accompany such a loss is difficult for parents and all concerned adults. Parents are encouraged to reach out to our school counselors and school psychologists to assist you with this process.
BRRSD is committed to supporting the Health and Wellness of the members of our community. This includes the mental health of our students. Sound mental health leads to better student attendance, engagement and academic performance. It also allows students to navigate the changing day-to-day realities they face in a positive and productive way. Within the district there are aspects of our taught curriculum and a comprehensive school-based counseling to assist students with stress management, coping and social skills, anger management, conflict resolution, and strategies to deal with grief and loss. When needed, the school counselor may also refer a student to outside professionals if school-based counseling is not sufficient to meet a student’s or a student’s family’s needs. The links below are helpful guides covering a variety of mental health services:
New Jersey School Boards Association - Tackling Teen Suicide
Back To School
General Mental Health Information
Live Your Life Well
Video: Teen Depression
District Wellness Newsletter - September 2018
BRRSD is dedicated to the prevention of drug and alcohol misuse and abuse, and has initiated programs to promote safe drug- and alcohol-free schools for children of all ages. The programs include school-focused policies and curriculum, student and parent-focused initiatives, and participation in community programs. It is important that the school, parents/guardians and members of our community work together to bring awareness to the dangers of substance abuse. Talking openly with your children about the effects of drugs and alcohol is the first step in fighting this rapidly growing problem.
Depression and Suicide
Depression, psychological difficulties, and self destructive thoughts and behaviors are problems of increasing severity among school communities. Self-destructive behavior or suicidal inclination may not be apparent until a critical phase has been reached.
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 and ask them to help you figure out what to do.
Intervention & Referral Services
Response To Intervention
This program uses a multi-criteria system which identifies students who would benefit from additional instruction from Intervention Specialists (certified teachers) in the areas of mathematics and/or language arts due to skill gaps that cause them to perform below grade level. A broad spectrum of strategies is employed for diagnosing learning areas of strength and specific skills gaps, prescribing specific learning interaction, and monitoring and sustaining student academic performance. Interventions may include planned differentiation by classroom teachers as well as focused direct instruction in push-in/pull-out, small group/individualized instruction.
The goal of the RTI program is to intervene regarding student learning concerns, resolve those concerns, build success, and release the student gradually toward independence. The RTI program does not track students into alternate ability-level groupings; instead, it endeavors to identify and address the specific learning and neuodevelopmental strengths and weaknesses as well as the experiential knowledge gaps in the profiles of individual students. In turn, instruction is scaffolded into guided, independent, and applied practice, and assessment of skill acquisition and content application is ongoing. As such, RTI maximizes student understanding and academic potential.
Note that the High School RTI program does not replace Language and Literature English courses or Mathematics courses; instead, it supplants an elective.
Intervention & Referral Service Coordinator
- Counseling Resources
- Women's Health Issues Resources
- Eating Disorders Resources
- LGBQT Community Resources
- Suicide Prevention
Substance Abuse Counselors
- Family and Community Services of Somerset County (732) 356-1082
- Cliff Koblin (609) 252-1152
- Kieran Ayre (973) 300-7399 (Choices for Change)
- Dawn Ryalls (908) 595-9466
- Meagan Mormile (908) 252-0404
- Family and Consulting Services: Georgette Jungels (908) 704-8591
- Gabrielson Group (908) 927-0050
- Kathy Ketofsky (732) 718-6152
- Jordan Counseling: Hal Ketofsky (732) 718-0586
- Catholic Charities (908)722-1881
- Somerset Treatment Services (908) 722-1232
- Princeton House (609) 497- 3300
- White Deer Run (877) 907- 6327
- Caron Foundation (610) 678-2332
- Clear Brook (201) 991-3785 or (570) 823-1171
- Daytop (979) 539-5764
- High Focus Chemical Dependence Program (908) 272-2474 - Branchburg #1000
- Nicole Walter (609) 306-8500
- Shari Weinglass (908) 625-8810
- Somerset Medical Center (800) 914-9444
- Princeton Medical Center (609) 497-4000
- Kimberly Leatherdale (908) 256-4779
Adolescent Psychiatric Programs
- Allies (908) 253-3168 Bridgewater Assessment Center (908) 253-3165
- Gen-Pysch, Bridgewater - 436-7792
- High Focus (908) 272-2474
- Princeton House (732) 435-0202
- UMDNJ (732) 235-4152
- St. Peter’s New Brunswick - For Keeps program - (732) 565-5494
- Planned Parenthood (732) 246-2411
- Zufall Health Center (908) 526-2335 #116
- PESS (Psychiatric Emergency Screening Services) (908) 526-4100
- Value Options (877) 652-7624
- Allies School Crisis Response Team (908) 309-9087
- Family Crisis Intervention Unit (908) 704-6330
Spanish Speaking Therapists
- Family and Community Services of Somerset County (732) 356-1082 (Cindy Porcario or Carmella)
|Courtney Battista||(908) 399-9024|
|Dr. Lynn Bisco||(908) 685-9025|
|Barbara Costlow||(908) 685-0026|
|Bob Filocco||(908) 874-0071|
|Kathleen R. Ketofsky||(732) 718-6152|
|Robin Loonin||(908) 595-1200|
|Megan M. Mormile||(908) 252-0404|
|Rochelle Portalatin||(732) 236-3426|
|Jerry Rothe||(908) 755-3055|
|Janet Tracy||(908) 285-2864|
|Richard A. Charwin||(908) 757-1399|
|Gina Kassel||(908) 658-3167|
|Tobie R. Kramer||(908) 575-9100|
|Greer Meledonis||(908) 359-2466|
|Madeline Podskoc||(908) 253-3154|
|Rhonda Rapps||(732) 469-7676|
|Dawn Cautillo Ryalls||(908) 595-9466|
|Alex Wieselman||(908) 781-7900|
Women's Health Issues Resources
All offer free or low cost assistance
Women’s Health and Counseling Center
71 Fourth Street
Somerville, NJ 08876
Teen Clinic third Tuesday of each month
Child Care Resource and Referral Services
Planned Parenthood of Central New Jersey
10B Industrial Drive
New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901
Plainfield Neighborhood Health Center
1700-58 Myrtle Avenue
Plainfield, NJ 07063
All health issues – provides free or low cost health care.
Eating Disorder Program – Somerset Medical Center
110 Rehill Avenue
Somerville, NJ 08876
800-914-9444 (24 hour service)
Friendship Center of New Beginnings
162 Main Street
Flemington, NJ 08822
(908) – 906-4444
Christian Based free services for pregnancy.
Zarephath Health Center
A specific mission to help churches meet the health care needs of the poor, uninsured and under-insured.
ZHC hours: Mon & Thu 10am-2pm, Wed 7-9pm
Pediatrics: First Tuesday of the month, 7-9pm
Ministry Coordinators: Dr. John & Dr. Alieta Eck
Eating Disorders Resources
Hunterdon Behavioral Health at Hunterdon Medical Center
Eating Disorders Recovery Group participants will learn about the relationship between dietary restrictions, negative mood, low self-esteem and binge eating and purging. The group is for teenagers and young adults, ages 15-21 years old. Cynthia Comparato, M.A., L.C.S.W. and Terri Annecchiarico, L.S.W. will facilitate the group. The attendance fee is covered by most insurance plans. Call Hunterdon Behavioral Health for more information. (908) 788-6401 ext. 3356
Somerset Medical Center
Somerset Medical Center’s Eating Disorders Program provides clinical evaluations to determine the most effective level of care. Services for adolescents and adults include:
Prompt medical, nutritional and psychological evaluation begins a process of stabilization and treatment within a highly structured environment. The goal is to have the patient return home and assume outpatient treatment as soon as possible.
Up to five days a week, with five hours of therapy per day.
Intensive Outpatient Services:
Up to three days a week, with three hours of therapy per day.
Weekly Support Groups:
Free support groups for patients as well as family and friends.
How Patients Start Treatment:
Treatment begins with a phone call to the Assessment Center (800-914-9444). Patients then receive an initial evaluation with one of the psychiatrists to determine the level of treatment necessary to start the process of recovery.
University Medical Center
Eating Disorders Program at University Medical Center at Princeton is committed to providing exceptional medical, psychotherapeutic and nutritional care as well as highly personal care for each patient. Treatment is provided for adults, adolescents and children who are suffering from anorexia, bulimia and other eating disorders. Each patient is evaluated to develop a treatment plan designed to achieve a full recovery.
24 hour care with specific attention to medical and physical problems. There is a weekend program for family members who want to participate in the recovery process.
Partial Hospital Program:
Treatment from two to five days each week, Monday through Friday. There is an evening program for family members.
Outpatient treatment providers are included in treatment planning throughout hospitalization to maintain quality of care.
If you are interested in learning more about this program or to schedule an appointment for an evaluation with a physician, call the intake coordinator at 609-497-4490 or 877-932-8935. Self referrals accepted.
|NJ-211 Community Resources||211|
|AL-ANON/ALATEEN Information Services||973-744-8686|
|Child Abuse||877-NJABUSE (652-2873)|
|Children’s Mobile Response & Stabilization Services||877-652-7624|
|Cocaine Hotline||800-COCAINE (262-2463)|
|Early Intervention System (NJEIS)||888-NJEI-INFO|
|Family Crisis Intervention Unit (FCIU)||908-704-6330|
|Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender National Hotline||888-843-4564|
|Hyacinth Foundation (GLBT)||908-433-0254|
|Psychiatric Emergency Screening Service (PESS)||908-526-4100|
|Pregnancy Aid and Information Center||908-526-8121|
|National Runaway Hotline||800 RUNAWAY|
|National AIDS Hotline||800-342-2437|
|National AIDS Hotline - Spanish||800-344-7432|
|National AIDS Hotline - Deaf||800-243-7889|
|National Runaway Hotline||800-231-6946|
|National STD Hotline||800-227-8922|
|Rape Crisis Services of Somerset County||908-526-7444|
|Recovery.org - Heroin Addiction Hotline||888-319-2606|
|Resource Center for Women and their Families||866-685-1122|
|Somerset Operation Shelter||800-287-3607|
|Transgender Crisis Hotline||877-565-8860|
LGBQT Community Resources
Support Groups for Teens
HiTOPS is a twenty-year-old 501(c)3 non-profit organization, located in Mercer County, New Jersey whose mission is to promote adolescent health and well-being. HiTOPS helps adolescents clarify their values and make responsible decisions regarding their health and actions, and gives parents, teachers and caregivers of adolescents the tools they need to best support and guide the young people they nurture.
First & Third is HiTOPS' educational and social support group for GLBTQ youth and their allies. It meets the first and third Saturdays of each month, from 2:30 – 4:30, at HiTOPS (21 Wiggins Street in downtown Princeton). First & Third is facilitated by
Corrine O'Hara, RN, GLBTQ Program Coordinator
For more information, please contact Corrine:
Phone: 609-683-5155 x217, email: email@example.com
Support Groups for Parents, Students, Family, and Friends
Closest local Chapter is Morris County location. Meetings are every month at Brookdale Community Church.
Phone: 973-727-5288, email: Schubert@gfn.com, website: www.plagnorthjersey.org.
The Peer Listening Line
This helpline operates from 7:00-10:00 p.m., Monday through Friday (as staffing allows) by trained gay youth volunteers backed by mental health professionals. The hotline provides peer support, resource referral and safer sex information.
National Gay and Lesbian Youth Hotline
This helpline operates from 7:00-11:45 p.m., Thursday through Sunday, and provides crisis intervention and referral services to gay and lesbian youth nationwide.
This helpline focuses on issues confronting young people who are questioning their sexuality, and on those who may be considering suicide. It offers a chance to talk with trained counselors who can also assist in locating local resources.
GSA-NJ Statewide Gay Straight Alliance Forum
The New Jersey Statewide GSA Forum brings together Gay Straight Alliances from across the state for a day of learning, sharing, networking and having a great time.
It’s a chance for students, advisors, supporters to meet others who are also determined to make their school climate safe and respectful for all regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity/expression. All are welcome.
GLSEN Central New Jersey is a chapter of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). Nationally, GLSEN works to ensure safe schools for ALL students, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. There are over 40 chapters around the country, which work closely with the national staff of GLSEN to implement programs, and to keep national staff informed of local events. The work that chapters do covers a variety of subjects and issues, from public policy to teacher training to supporting students and educators around the country.
GAAMC – Gay Activist Alliance of Morris County
GAAMC has a wide variety of services to offer in addition to weekly Monday evening meetings. Links to resources: http://www.gaamc.org/resources.html
New Jersey Lesbian and Gay Coalition
Has a youth resources publication that includes phone support at:
Youth Resource Network
YouthResource is a Web site created by and for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (GLBTQ) young people. YouthResource takes a holistic approach to sexual health and exploring issues of concern to GLBTQ youth, by providing information and offer support on sexual and reproductive health issues through education and advocacy. Through monthly features, message boards, and online peer education, GLBTQ youth receive information on activism, culture, sexual health and other issues that are important to them.
PESS – Psychiatric Emergency Screening Services at Somerset Medical Center (Bridgewater)
Richard Hall Community Mental Health Center (Bridgewater)
Carrier Clinic (Belle Mead)
Family and Community Services (Bound Brook)
732-356-1082 (Spanish speaking therapists are available)
Lydia Counseling Center (Hillsborough)
Psychological Clinic of the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (Piscataway)
1-800-273-TALK (8255) – The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
TTY Users: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889)
908-526-4100 Psychiatric Emergency Screening Service (PESS)
Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Suicide Awareness Voices of Education
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
VIDEO - NOT MY KID
The Society for the Prevention of Teen Suicide
District Wellness Newsletter - September 2018
Save a Friend
Talking About Suicide
Times of Tragedy Part 1
Times of Tragedy Part 2
What Your Overnight Donation Can Do
Suicide Prevention 1
Suicide Prevention 2
If you or someone you know is in crisis, please call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at
and ask them to help you figure out what to do.