Mt. Diablo Unified School District Reach Partnership Agreement with Advocacy Organizations to Implement Best Practices in Educating Students with Behavioral Health Needs

Press Release
Photo of a lone student sitting at the bottom of school steps. He seems troubled and has his head between his legs.

Concord, CA - This fall, the Mt. Diablo Unified School District begins implementation of a new partnership agreement with Disability Rights California, the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, and the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation.

This partnership seeks to use the expertise of all of the partners to expand and continue the District’s efforts to identify and implement best practices in educating students with behavioral health needs. 

With this partnership, the District is working to increase access to high-quality education and models of programming with the intention of piloting, and replicating, demonstrated best practices throughout California.

The scope and scale of this collaborative plan explicitly includes but is not limited to:

  • The expansion of already-existing Educationally Related Mental Health Services (ERMHS) for students in the District
  • Further training of District teachers and staff in trauma-informed instruction and Social-Emotional Learning (SEL)
  • Restorative Justice Programs
  • Increased opportunities for inclusion of students with behavioral health needs in academic and non-academic activities at comprehensive campuses  

Over the next three years, Disability Rights California, Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, and the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation will work together to implement and monitor this agreement and distribute a confidential survey to all parents of Sunrise Elementary School students twice yearly.

“Our goal is to ensure students with disabilities in the District continue to have meaningful access to inclusive education opportunities and positive behavioral supports,” said Robert Borrelle, supervising attorney, Disability Rights California.

The District and all members of the partnership look forward to the implementation of the plan, which commences at the start of the 2019-2020 school year.

Additional Documents



Disability Rights California (DRC) - Is the agency designated under federal law to protect and advocate for the rights of Californians with disabilities. The mission of DRC is to advance the rights, dignity, equal opportunities, and choices for all people with disabilities. DRC is a member of the National Disability Rights Network (NDRN). NDRN is a nonprofit membership organization for the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Systems, the largest provider of advocacy services to people with disabilities in the United States. For more information visit:

Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF), founded in 1979, is a leading national civil rights law and policy center directed by individuals with disabilities and parents who have children with disabilities. For more information visit:

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is a nationwide organization that fights for the principle that every individual’s rights must be protected equally under the law. We strive for an America where people with disabilities are valued, integrated members of society, who have full access to education, homes, healthcare, families and jobs. For more information visit: