Mental Health Screening and Monitoring for Children in Care: A Short Guide for Children's Agencies and Post-adoption Services, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Mental Health Screening and Monitoring for Children in Care

A Short Guide for Children's Agencies and Post-adoption Services, 1st Edition

By Michael Tarren-Sweeney


196 pages | 5 B/W Illus.

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Mental Health Screening and Monitoring for Children in Care provides a concise, step-by-step guide for children’s agencies on how to carry out mental health screening and monitoring for children and adolescents growing up in alternative care.

Michael Tarren-Sweeney outlines unique universal mental health screening and monitoring procedures that can be implemented without the need for clinical training or professional oversight. These procedures reliably identify which children should be referred to clinical services for a comprehensive assessment, and which children do not require further assessment. Informed by recent empirical research carried out with children in foster care in Australia and the Netherlands, these procedures screen the vast majority of children who have clinical-level difficulties for a second-stage assessment, including those with attachment- and trauma-related difficulties, meaning that very few such children remain undetected.

This book is an invaluable resource for charitable children’s agencies, children’s service providers, statutory children’s services, children’s social workers, and post-adoption support services.

Table of Contents

List of figures

List of tables


List of abbreviations


Chapter 1. The Mental Health of Children and Young People in Alternative Care

Chapter 2. Clinical Interventions and Support Services for Children in Alternative Care (and Their Carers) – Accessibility and Effectiveness?

Chapter 3. Brief Assessment, Screening and Monitoring – What’s the Difference, and Does It Matter?

Chapter 4. An Overview of Brief Caregiver-Report Screening and Monitoring Measures

Chapter 5. A Mental Health Screening and Monitoring Protocol for Children’s Agencies

Chapter 6. Is Screening and Brief Monitoring Enough? The Case for Universal, Comprehensive Assessment of Children in Statutory Care (Including Those Transitioning to Legally-Permanent Alternative Care)

Appendix 1. Assessment Checklist for Children Short Form (ACC-SF): Girls’ Profile Sheet

Appendix 2. Assessment Checklist for Adolescents Short-Form (ACA-SF) Profile Sheet

Appendix 3. Brief Assessment Checklist for Children (BAC-C) Record Form

Appendix 4. Brief Assessment Checklist for Adolescents (BAC-A) Record Form



About the Author

Michael Tarren-Sweeney is a clinical child psychologist, epidemiologist, and child developmental theorist. He is Professor of Child and Family Psychology at Canterbury University in New Zealand, and founding Editor of the international research journal Developmental Child Welfare.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health