​Student Assistance Program

The Pennsylvania Student Assistance Program (SAP) is a systematic team process used to mobilize school resources to remove barriers to learning. 

SAP is designed to assist in identifying issues including alcohol, tobacco, other drugs, and mental health issues which pose a barrier to a student's success. The primary goal of the Student Assistance Program is to help students overcome these barriers so that they may achieve, advance, and remain in school. While Student Assistance Programs exist in other areas of the country, the structure and operation of the program in Pennsylvania is a unique expression of an integrated model serving the needs of Pennsylvania families and students.

The Pennsylvania Student Assistance Program is overseen by the PA Network for Student Assistance Services (PNSAS) Interagency, Statewide Staff and Regional Coordinators' team; comprised of representation from the PA Departments of Education (Safe Schools Office), Drug and Alcohol Programs (Division of Prevention and Intervention) and Human Services (Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services). SAP is based upon state guidelines, professional standards, and policies and procedures adopted by the local school board of directors. Professional training conducted by a PA Approved SAP Training Provider (PASTP) is required for team members to ensure the appropriateness of the recommended services, effective interagency collaboration and compliance with state and federal laws protecting the privacy rights of parents and students. Guidelines for the SAP K-12 training system in Pennsylvania contain training standards and competencies to ensure SAP team professionals receive up-to-date professional training consistent with accountable standards and appropriate procedures.

Please refer to the PA Network for Student Assistance Services web site for more information.