School-Linked Services: Practice, Policy, and Constructing Sustainable Collaboration

Twyla Salm

Abstract


In Saskatchewan, many of the provincial practices and policies addressing health and social issues including, poverty and social exclusion in multi-service schools are informed by an integrated services policy called SchoolPLUS. This study explores how SchoolPLUS discourse has shaped and continues to produce the collaborative integrated services landscape and impact wider social strategies even though it is no longer considered government policy. Three factors are suggested as reasons for SchoolPLUS’s decline. First, SchoolPLUS practice became edu-centric and marginalized other professions in blatant and subtle ways. Second, the level of collaborative competencies needed to perform collaboration is often underestimated—for SchoolPLUS too much might have been expected too fast—and finally, there was a daunting complexity factor at the macro level. Data was collected by analysing academic publications and public documents, including government newsletters and the provincial teacher’s newspaper. A practice policy paradox is revealed, suggesting that the concept of SchoolPLUS emerged organically from the vernacular of practice and continues to produce, and be reproduced, in this domain regardless of the current, official interprofessional policy.

        Keywords: multi-service schools; policy; integrated services


Keywords


interprofessional collaboration; document analysis

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