Employee Health Award

MNPS Wins National Award for Employee Mental Health Initiatives
Posted on 10/26/2022
MNPS BOE member, director of schools and representatives from HT and wellness in portrait.

Metro Nashville Public Schools has won a national award for its work to advance employee wellbeing and provide access to mental health support.

Members of the district’s Human Resources staff will travel to Bethesda, Md., on Nov. 16 to accept the inaugural Carolyn C. Mattingly Award for Mental Health in the Workplace from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Luv U Project. MNPS health staff with BOE member, HR rep and Director of Schools

“We want our employees to have every opportunity to take care of themselves so they can continue to do great work for our students and families,” Director of Schools Dr. Adrienne Battle said in recognizing the team at the Oct. 25 Board of Education meeting. “I’m thrilled that our first-rate HR team is being honored for its own great work to make these benefits possible.”

Award evaluators took note of numerous initiatives and innovations by the district to meet employees where they are, including:

  • The removal of barriers to health care for employees, particularly the removal of cost sharing for all mental health services for teachers. In 2019, all copayments for any mental health office visits for teachers, whether in person or virtual, were removed.
  • The establishment of the five Vanderbilt at MNPS Employee and Family Health Care centers, especially the variety of services offered, high utilization rates, and the no-cost model that removes all copayments for covered teachers.
  • A wide range of wellness programs and services to meet a variety of employee needs.
  • Robust communication of services through multiple channels.
  • A mental health and wellness survey – conducted in the first quarter of 2022 – to guide future efforts and direction. This survey found that nearly 9 in 10 participants agreed that the available mental health benefits were helpful to them and their families.
  • High usage of the district’s Employee Assistance Program.
  • And MNPS’s demonstration of a culture of data-driven assessment, analysis and response to employee mental health needs and risk factors, particularly the focus on health disparities and social determinants of health as well as strategic alignment of programs and services to meet employee needs.

“Much of our work revolves around removing barriers to care, whether financial or physical,” said David Hines, the district’s Executive Director of Employee Benefits. “Overcoming barriers is critical to succeeding in the promotion of good mental health. Overcoming financial barriers by removing copayments and overcoming physical limitations through bringing mental health professionals on site and embracing virtual technologies positioned us well prior to the pandemic to address the crisis to come. But the work is never finished.”


Take a look at the MNPS Wellness Center website for information on services, clinic locations, fitness program and more. 

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