TRAILS (Transforming Research into Action to Improve the Lives of Students) is a program committed to making effective mental health services accessible in all schools. By training existing school staff in evidence-based practices such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and mindfulness, TRAILS is reducing barriers to youth mental health care throughout the state of Michigan and in a number of other settings nationwide.

To meet the needs of all students, TRAILS equips school staff with the training, resources, and clinical tools necessary to implement 3 tiers of programming:

  • Tier 1: Social and emotional learning (SEL) for the classroom to promote resiliency and build self-regulation skills in all students; and self-care strategies for staff to counter stress and burnout
  • Tier 2: Early intervention for students experiencing mental health concerns
  • Tier 3: Suicide risk management and care coordination for students in crisis

TRAILS programming has been proven to make a difference. Teachers who have implemented the Tier 1 SEL Curriculum report that it is accessible, engaging, easy to deliver, and relevant to students of all ages. Studies of TRAILS Tier 2 services show similar results: Students who receive CBT and Mindfulness programming delivered by their school mental health professional demonstrate a 16.9% decrease in symptoms of depression and/or anxiety, as well as an increased use of self-regulation and coping skills.

TRAILS is led by Dr. Elizabeth Koschmann, Assistant Research Scientist for Michigan Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry. Onboarding for new school partners takes place on a rolling basis, with priority given to districts located in Michigan. For more information on TRAILS, visit