School climate for sexual minority youth : reflections by college-age adults on K-12 experiences

Sarah A. Drought


The purpose of the present study was to examine the transportability and acceptability of a school-based modified packaged intervention for treating students with selective mutism in a clinical setting (Bergman, 2013). Despite significant academic and social difficulties that can occur for students with selective mutism (SM), there is little research on evidence-based interventions that can be effectively implemented in schools. This study employed a conjoint behavioral consultation model for treating students with SM in a school setting (Mitchell & Kratochwill, 2013). Participants included three students, 5 to 10 years old, their parents, and school professionals. A multiple baseline across participants experimental design was employed to evaluate gains in vocal and non-vocal behavior as a result of the treatment. Systematic direct observations of communication behaviors served as the primary dependent measure, in addition to pre/post measures were utilized to measure a change in SM symptoms, functional communication, anxiety, and somatization. In addition to measuring intervention effect, acceptability of the intervention was examined. Results indicated minimal increases in non-vocal behaviors and no gains in vocal behaviors. Overall, high levels of intervention acceptability were demonstrated despite the fact that it was largely ineffective. Implications for practice are discussed, specifically in regards to transporting evidence-based interventions from a clinical to school setting for students with SM.