Alliance for Inclusion and Prevention (AIP) is a private, nonprofit children’s mental health and special education organization that provides school- and community-based services to urban youth facing social, emotional, behavioral, and academic challenges. A small, innovative organization focused on demonstrating new and more effective models for advancing the mental health and school success of children at high risk, AIP has defined a new model of public/private partnership for serving children with behavioral health problems.
AIP’s Mission is to advance school achievement and life outcomes for children facing serious social, emotional, or behavioral challenges or other risk factors. We develop innovative and effective mental health, youth development, and educational programs and partnerships to support and strengthen children and families in Massachusetts. Our programs are strategically designed to inform public policy reforms in education and children’s mental health.
Equality of Opportunity
AIP strives to reduce barriers to quality educational and mental health opportunities for urban youth and their families. We believe that positive life outcomes are built on access to schools with high quality enrichment activities and social/emotional supports that all children need to reach their full potential.
Not all mental health and youth support services are created equal. AIP strives to be sure that everything we do is informed by the best scientific knowledge about what works and is respectful of cultural and individual differences.
Power of Partnerships
No one school nor agency can singlehandedly solve the disparities in access to opportunities that promote success in life. AIP works in close partnership with individual schools and entire districts – and with community partners, parents and other stakeholders – to implement promising new approaches to longstanding problems.
A Brief History
AIP began in 1995 with the simple but profound idea that children experiencing emotional and behavioral problems could be better served if schools and nonprofit mental health providers were to work in deep partnership. Our work has focused on how to integrate nonprofit providers into the day-to-day work of public schools. The result is an enriched array of services during and after school that engage students and families in new and powerful ways.
We have pioneered a wide variety of academic enrichment and therapeutic supports that operate in unison with the everyday work of our partner schools. In keeping with these ideas, AIP’s founding Inclusion Day Program begun in 1995 retrieved students sent out-of-district to private therapeutic schools in order to receive the services they need in the healthy peer environment of a public school setting. For the next 21 years AIP operated a nationally recognized public-private partnership model for integrating full-time nonprofit mental health resources into public schools. The result was an inclusionary continuum of special education, mental health, prevention programming, and out-of-school time programs that benefitted students at all tiers of need.
AIP’s Center for Trauma Care in Schools trains teachers, community clinicians, and other partners in how to help children with traumatic stress learn the skills to better regulate their emotions and behavior in order to succeed in school and in life. As the science about the best ways to treat children’s mental health disorders is rapidly evolving, AIP works to ensure that all of our trainings and services have a strong evidence base. This includes the work we do in our home-based Multisystemic Therapy (MST) program, a highly researched model for helping parents address serious behavior problems at home, school and the community.
AIP has been the first to introduce and disseminate many evidence-based treatments in Massachusetts. We focus on these approaches because they are of high quality, and are shown to improve life outcomes. AIP continues to build on our founding belief that youth and their families benefit when schools are able to serve the needs of the whole child – academic, social, and emotional. That takes partnership and deep collaboration with all the stakeholders in each child’s life.