Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources

We recognize that the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) presents challenges for public health to stop the spread of the respiratory illness. On January 21, 2020 a public health emergency was declared for the U.S. Gov. JB Pritzker issued a disaster proclamation March 9, 2020. The World Health Organization noted COVID-19 as a global pandemic on March 11, 2020. On March 12th, 2020, President Trump declared a National Emergency and on March 20th, 2020, Gov. J.B. Pritzker ordered all non-essential businesses closed. On April 17th, 2020, the governor announced that in-person learning will be suspended for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. COVID-19 resources by topic are provided to aid in proper response in your school community. Most resources are linked to source websites instead of direct documents given the dynamic updates being provided for best practices.

Mental Health / Crisis Support

Do you or someone in your family need support during the pandemic? The Illinois Call4Calm Text Line is free and will link you with a local counselor. There are a number of other supports available by text, phone, and web to get help while maintaining social distancing.

Talking with Children

We recognize concern over COVID-19 with increased media coverage and federal, state, and local responses can make children, families, and staff feel anxious in your school communities. It is important to remember that children will look to adults to model how they should respond. Parents and teachers should reassure their children with factual information on the disease and efforts health and school officials are making.

The National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) with the National Association of School Nurses (NASN) have released a resource for parents and caregivers, which is available in multiple languages. The NASP/NASN parent resource is also linked in the COVID-19 Family Letter template provided by the Illinois State Board of Education. The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) - Division of Mental Health has also compiled resources from the National Childhood Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the World Health Organization (WHO), with guidance on talking with children, stress, and mental and behavioral health self-care.


Maintaining your mental health through good self-care is essential in times of crisis. Consider NASP's extensive self-care resource list to maintain a healthy routine with your activities, meals, and sleep. If you are a school employee consider taking advantage of Headspace for Educators which gives you free subscription access to guided meditation and mindfulness activities for personal, family, and school use.

COVID-19 General Information

For general information about COVID-19 please refer to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) or the CDC which provides resources for frequently asked questions, steps to take for prevention, and guidelines for schools, households, businesses, communities, long-term care facilities, pregnant women & children, and travel. IDPH also provides information regarding the number of persons tested for COVID-19 in Illinois.

Professional Practice During the Closure

Check out some of the resources below for professional activities and guidance on issues, including meeting internship requirements, and virtual service delivery. Please review our letter to ISBE regarding special education evaluations during the closure and guidance on supervision.

Professional Development & Learning Activities

Publisher Resources

Working Remotely

Learning While at Home

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has a large listing of free resources to assist districts, teachers, and parents to provide learning activities during the school closure. Additional free resources and tools are listed, with many providers are offering special free access in response to the pandemic.

Guidance for Schools

By order of the Gov. J.B. Pritzker, there is a mandatory closure of all schools, public and private, serving preschool through 12th grade for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. Schools will use remote learning to meet the needs of their students for the remainder of the school year.

The National Association of School Psychologists has provided multiple resources for actions steps by school crisis teams, tips for countering COVID-19 stigma and racism, and other tools for pandemic preparedness in school Emergency Operation Plans.

The U.S. Department of Education Office of Rehabilitation Services and the Office of Civil Rights have also issued guidance regarding bullying and stigma related to COVID-19 and guidance on implementation of services under IDEA or Section 504 in the event of extended school closures.

IDPH and the CDC are providing on-going guidance for school closures, cleaning and disinfection, and checklists for teachers and parents.

Resources for Educators and Families Working Together to Prevent Child Abuse and Neglect During COVID-19

ISPA - COVID Resources for Psychologists, Administrators, Educators, and Families 
The National Association of School Psychologists also maintains an extensive resource hub on it's website and several one page handouts (attached) with specific resources and support for numerous mental health topics including parent/child anxiety, depression, sleep disturbance, grief, and suicide prevention. 
NASP - COVID Resources for Psychologists, Educators, and Families:
The IL Dept of Public Health has created a text hotline for anyone in need of emotional support to be connected with a mental health professional. 
Heart of Illinois United Way has a hotline for anyone to contact to be connected to local health and human care services by dialing 211.

Prevent Child Abuse America has created a set of resources that can be shared directly with families to help them manage stress and anxiety, stay connected as a family, and to stay healthy during the coronavirus pandemic.
Prevent Child Abuse America Resources for Families

The Chicago Children's Advocacy Center has shared resources for adults to use in preventing or responding to incidents of child sexual abuse while children are home during isolation.
Chicago Children's Advocacy Center - Reducing Child Sexual Abuse During Isolation

The Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children has created a resource hub for educators and families to protect children during the COVID-19 global pandemic. 
End Violence Against Children: Protecting Children During COVID Outbreak

PBS News Hour created a powerful segment that reminds us that not all children are safe while at home during this time. 
PBS Newshour: What Shelter at Home Means for Those Who Aren't Safe There
Shine has created a parent-friendly resource hub for parents to connect to mental health supports online: 
Anxiety Toolkit and Resource Hub
The following resources were shared by psychologists on the NASP Member Exchange to assist parents and families in supporting children with challenging behaviors while at home during isolation: 
Resources for Supporting Youth with Challenging Behaviors at Home  This is a series of videos for parents that are part of the Practiced Routines Curriculum, and these were only recently made available for free through Youtube. Dr. Meme Hieneman is an expert in Family Based Positive Behavior Support and guides families through a step-by-step process for routine-based interventions. This is the youtube channel for the Behavior Response Support Team out of the University of Utah with some amazing colleagues doing great work for teachers and families. They are releasing a series of videos to provide parents with quick tips for behavior support in the home. There will be versions in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Chinese. The Home and Community PBS Network (HCPBS) has gathered an amazing amount of available resources and literature into one place. Some of this is relevant to families directly, others to practitioners working with families.