OSS Offers Crisis Intervention Course to Wisconsin Schools

Feb 20 2023

MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of School Safety (OSS) is now offering training on how to respond to an acute traumatic stressor, to all Wisconsin Schools. The PREPaRE 2 Crisis Intervention Course, works to develop the knowledge and skills required to provide immediate mental health crisis interventions to students, staff, and school community members who have been simultaneously exposed to an acute traumatic stressor.  


“Office of School Safety staff will be providing high-quality trainings to help ensure that schools are prepared to respond to crisis events,” said Attorney General Josh Kaul. “While we hope that no school is ever impacted by a tragedy, being prepared can help schools respond as effectively as possible if a tragedy does occur.”


The PREPaRE model emphasizes that members of a school crisis response team must be involved in the following hierarchical and sequential set of activities:


  • PPrevent and prepare for crises
  • RReaffirm physical health & welfare, and perceptions of safety & security
  • EEvaluate psychological trauma risk
  • PProvide interventions
  • aand
  • RRespond to mental health needs
  • EExamine the effectiveness of crisis preparedness

The course, taught by certified trainers on the OSS staff, equips school staff to respond effectively when a crisis event occurs. Interventions taught will promote psychological recovery for staff and students and will be selected to “do no harm”. Any Wisconsin school or district can reach out to OSS to request the free training. The 2-day workshop follows the PREPaRE training curriculum developed by the National Associate of School Psychologists.


OSS was initially supported by more than $2 million in federal grant funding from the U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance. OSS is currently supported by more than $1.8 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding which will end in December of 2023. DOJ has requested the legislature permanently fund OSS in the next biennial budget.