Mental Health Specialist (Tier II)

Title: Mental Health Specialist (Tier II)

Reports to: Associate Director of Special Services

FLSA: Exempt

Job Responsibilities:

  • Learns and adheres to the philosophy and mandates of Head Start/Early Head Start as outlined in the Performance Standards, licensing requirements, and the Policies and Procedures of Greater Bergen Community Action, Inc.

  • Responsible for the coordination of mental health services while building collaborative relationships among children, families, staff, and mental health professionals, as well as the larger community.

  • Ensures that the Head Start Program is in compliance with the Head Start/Early Head Start Performance Standards in the area of mental health.

  • Observes, screens, identifies, and develops plans for children and families with mental health needs, including difficulty adjusting to the classroom and behavioral problems.

  • Completes clinical mental health assessments, which includes a mental status examination and psychosocial history.

  • Provides therapeutic play interventions in the classroom with identified children.

  • Provides psychotherapeutic family counseling to primarily address relationship problems as a part of the child’s mental health assessment and plan.

  • Conducts psychotherapeutic support groups to provide information and help participants increase their ability to manage psychosocial stressors, relationship problems, and improve overall coping skills.

  • Facilitates referrals to community mental health providers, as needed.

  • Participates in multidiscipline team meetings to provide clinical consultation.

  • Provides in-service staff training.

  • Completes monthly report of services provided.

  • Takes part in Head Start Administrative meeting, if requested.

  • Assists with revision of mental health program plan.

  • Networks and advocates for clients and develops community partnerships with mental health and social service providers.

  • May provide clinical supervision to staff members pursuant to standards set forth by N.J.A.C 13:44G-8.1.


  • Master’s degree in Social Work or Counseling or related field

  • Current New Jersey state license in respective discipline (LCSW, LPC, or license in related field)

  • 1-3 years of clinical experience working with children and families

  • Experience working with a culturally diverse community

  • Basic computer skills

  • Spanish speaking skills a plus​

Knowledge of:

  • Social work theory and principles, including clinical assessment, clinical consultation, and psychotherapeutic counseling.

  • Current trends in the field of social work

  • Relevant medical terms and diagnosis

  • Principles of interviewing for the purpose of providing clinical counseling and completing mental health assessments

  • Public social service programs on the federal, state, and local level

  • Applicable federal, state, local and agency laws, policies, regulations, and program related contact guidelines within the area of responsibility

  • Local community and mental health resources

  • Various social, economic, cultural, and ethnic trends, conditions, and expectations

  • Public relation principles and practices

Ability to:

  • Organize, set priorities, and exercise sound independent judgement within areas of assigned responsibility

  • Interpret, apply, explain, and reach sound decisions in accordance with regulations, policies, and procedures

  • Organize and maintain specialized documentation

  • Comprehend and apply laws, regulations, policies, and procedures relative to the provision of mental health services

  • Appropriately identify, assess, and complete mental health assessments and behavior intervention plans to meet the needs of children and families

  • Exercise tact, objectivity, sensitivity, strategy, and judgment in dealing with a variety of people in a variety of situations

  • Communicate effectively with people of various educations, social, economic, and cultural backgrounds

  • Communicate clearly and concisely orally and in writing

  • Establish a maintain effective working relationships with clients, families, community agencies, staff and others encountered in the course of work

Physical & Mental Demands:

The physical and mental demands described here are representative of those that must be met by employees to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Physical Demands:

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, stand or bend; talk or hear, both in person and by telephone, use hands to find, handle, feel or operate standard office equipment; reach with hands and arms to lift up to fifty pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision and the ability to adjust focus. The employee will also work outdoors with children during some part of the day during each season.

Mental Demands:

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to use written and oral communication skill; read and interpret date, information, and documents; analyze and solve problems; observe and interpret situations; perform work on multiple, concurrent tasks and constant interruptions; and interact with management, staff, clients, state representatives, and other encountered in the course of work.

Work Environment:

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of the job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. The employee may have occasional contact with abusive and/or physically violent clients. If the employee works in a typical office condition, the noise level is generally quiet. If the employee works in a classroom setting, the noise level, at times, will be above a standard noise level.

To Apply Contact:

GBCA Inc., Human Resources 392 Main St. Hackensack, NJ 07601 or



Email along with resume to or Fax to (201) 342-9339

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE). Equal access to programs, services and employment is available to all persons.


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Greater Bergen Community Action is a 501(c) (3), not-for-profit Community Action Agency. Established in 1967, Greater Bergen is part of a nationwide network of poverty-fighting enterprises which were established as part of the nation’s effort to address the intractable and persistent problem of poverty in America.

Contact Us

GBCA Headquarters
392 Main Street
Hackensack, NJ 07601


Registered 501(c)(3). EIN: 22-1818014