Douglas ESD hosts school-based mental health cohort graduate program information sessions

March 8, 2023 – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley announced on Jan. 6 that four Oregon school districts will receive a combined School-Based Mental Health Grant Program funding of nearly $20 million from the U.S. Department of Education to hire additional licensed mental health providers.

Douglas Education Service District is thrilled to be a recipient of $2,236,382 for the fiscal year 2022. Federal grant funds for a total amount of $6,808,215 will be awarded to Douglas ESD through the year 2025, which is 71.4% of the total dollars that will be used in collaboration with other programs. This grant will play a critical role in expanding mental health support throughout the thirteen component school districts in Douglas County.

“The increased services will positively impact our students, families, staff and community, providing immediate and long-term needs,” said Analicia Nicholson Douglas Education Service District superintendent.

Douglas ESD has partnered with Bushnell University and Umpqua Community College to recruit and train school-based mental health service providers. The goal of the educational training is to increase the number of available school-based mental health providers in our local region.

Douglas ESD and Bushnell University are beginning the process of recruiting individuals to participate in this innovative program.

The grant funds will expand Douglas ESD’s Grow Your Own Program to eliminate barriers for professionals interested in becoming trained or retrained as a school-based mental health provider.

This approach will integrate classroom learning with real-world experience by funding a 3-year Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health program from Bushnell University and simultaneous employment at Douglas ESD. The grant will cover the tuition costs and fees. Evening graduate classes will occur locally at Umpqua Community College (UCC). UCC has generously donated classroom space and information technology support.

Douglas ESD will be hosting drop-in information nights for people to find out more about this grant-funded program. Representatives from Bushnell University and Douglas ESD will be available to answer questions.

The drop-in sessions are scheduled on:

  • Tuesday, March 14, 4:00 -6:00 p.m. – North County: Drain Civic Center (205 West A Avenue, Drain)
  • Thursday, March 16, 4:00 -6:00 p.m. – South County – Riddle Community Center (123 Parkside St, Riddle)
  • Friday, March 17, 4:00 -6:00 p.m. – Mid County – Roseburg Public Library (1409 NE Diamond Lake Blvd., Roseburg)

Applications will be made available on the Douglas ESD website. Applications are due April 10. Interviews will begin the last week in April. Employment with Douglas ESD will be offered with a rolling start date based on availability and need. Graduate courses will begin in August. To learn more about the process and timeline, visit:

For more questions about the information night, please email Cati Adkins, school safety and prevention specialist at