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Mental Health Specialist II

Children Services – Head Start – Childcare | Los Angeles, CA | Full Time

Job Description

About Us:

Volunteers of America of Greater Los Angeles is a large, national not-for-profit organization founded in 1896. We provide a variety of social services to Los Angeles area communities such as Head Start programs, Upward Bound college prep programs, veterans’ services, homeless shelters, low-income housing program as well as drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Learn more at

Program Summary:

Through our Head Start and Early Head Start programs, we work with children (ages 2 – 5) and their families to provide the skills, confidence and stable home life necessary for a smooth transition into kindergarten and beyond. Head Start positions are generally Monday through Friday, (10-1/2 months per year).

Job Summary:

The Mental Health Specialist II is responsible for providing a broad spectrum of mental health services. The services include mental health promotion, prevention, early identification of mental health concerns, and referrals for treatment of children and families.

Job duties and responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Increase the quality of mental health services by assessing child mental health concerns, determining appropriate mental health care and follow-up, and provide clinical services to children and families mental health needs in accordance with Head Start Performance Standards
  • Work in conjunction with program content areas as needed to ensure a holistic approach
  • In coordination with the education personnel, assist children in participating in emotional, cognitive, and social development toward the overall goal of social competence
  • Provide all children with linkages to necessary mental health services to ensure that children and families achieve the full benefits of participation in the program
  • Provide mental health education to parents of children enrolled in the program by participating in parent meetings, home visits, health advisory meetings, or other methods determined effective
  • Plan and prepare mental health education trainings, for staff, on determined topics or as requested
  • Use evidence-based practices, curricula, etc.
  • Assist with Mental Health Planning, intra- agency procedure formulation, staff development and wellness development of wellness curriculum through evaluation process and training
  • Directly reports to Mental Health Program Manager to consult on individual and group cases to explore appropriate direction of clinical treatment
  • Encourage the provision of a classroom and home environment that enhances feelings that increase well-being in children and parents by observation and consultation with parents and team
  • Attends all meeting required by the funding source and agency management; prepares and submits required reports promptly and accurately
  • Identifies resources that are necessary to enhance program implementation
  • Travel to all program sites to provide technical assistance
  • Maintain and monitors federal compliance with HSES Performance Standards in all content areas
  • Accurately documents all work with clients ensuring compliance with program policies and procedures and maintains confidentiality
  • Other duties as required and is subject to change at any time
  • Ability to perform under circumstances of possible emotional stress and conflict, dealing with un-cooperative clients
  • Ability to work a regular schedule provided by your direct supervisor
  • Ability to safely and successfully perform the essential job functions consistent with the ADA, FMLA, and other federal, state, and local standards, with and without reasonable accommodation including meeting qualitative and quantitative productivity standards
  • Ability to maintain regular, punctual attendance consistent with ADA, FMLA, and other federal, state, and local standards


  • Must be over the age of 18 years old


  • MFT/MSW degree or related field from an accredited university
  • Current registration with the California Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS) (AMFT, LMFT, ACSW, LCSW) and must maintain CA BBS registration as a condition of employment


  • 2-3 years of experience working with children and families in a clinical setting

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Must meet state and federal regulations for the compliance of the Mental Health Area
  • Strong computer skills, Microsoft Outlook, Excel, Word and web-based Electronic Health Record software (ChildPlus)
  • Strong written and verbal communication, set priorities, handle multiple tasks, problem solving, decision making, interpret data, detail oriented, accurate, analytical, organize, read/write; proficient in understanding and communication of the spoken and written English language, meet established deadlines
  • Dependable, collaborative, have regular/dependable attendance, be prompt, positive mindset, flexible, and organized

Job Requirements:

  • Valid California Driver’s license, insurance, and reliable transportation
  • Occasional travel required
  • TB clearance within 6 months prior
  • Annual Influenza vaccination (between August 1 – December 1)
  • Pertussis (whooping cough) and measles immunization
  • Health screening at the time of employment
  • Requires ability to interact with children in a busy environment including
  • Able to lift up to 50 lbs.
  • Frequently kneel and squat
  • Ability to move quickly
  • Fingerprint clearances required prior to employment.

Preferred Qualifications:  

  • Familiarity with Head Start performance standards
  • Knowledge of Creative curriculum
  • Bilingual in English and Spanish (written and verbal)

Volunteers of America is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex including sexual orientation and gender identity, national origin, disability, protected Veteran Status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law

This employer participates in E-Verify and will provide the federal government with your Form 1-9 information to confirm that you are authorized to work in the U.S.

If E-Verify cannot confirm that you are authorized to work, this employer is required to give you written instructions and an opportunity to contact Department of Homeland Security (OHS) or Social Security Administration (SSA) so you can begin to resolve the issue before the employer can take any action against you, including terminating your employment.