For Parents and Families

Frequently Asked Questions By Parents And Families

What can you do to help your student from a distance?

Of course, you are still a parent to your college bound student, and he or she does still need your support and guidance during these years.  Here are some ways you can express how much you care and support your student’s college experience:

  • Stay in touch!  Even though your student is experimenting with independent choices, he or she still needs to know that you’re there and available to talk about both normal events and difficult issues.  Make arrangements prior to each school year, in agreement with your student to write, email, text, Facebook or call on certain agreed-upon times.
  • Allow space for your college student to set the agenda for some of your conversations and interactions.  It can even be normal and developmentally appropriate for some college students to want little contact with their parents.  Some students choose their most important relationships to be with peers and/or significant faculty and staff.  This is an important part of gaining personal identity and autonomy and can assist the college student in being able to relate to you.
  • Be realistic with your college student about financial matters.  Most students come to school with a fairly detailed plan about how tuition, fees, books, and room and board will be paid for, and what the family’s expectations are about money.  Being specific at the outset may help avoid misunderstandings later.
  • Be realistic as well about academic achievement and grades.  College attracts bright students from all over and not every first-year student who excelled academically in high school will be an all-A student in college.  Developing or refining the capacity to work independently and consistently and to demonstrate mastery can be more important than grades, as long as the student meets the basic academic requirements set out by the college.

How does my student who is under 18 access counseling services?

California law allows a student who is under the age of consent (i.e., under 18) to participate in therapy provided the student has sufficient maturity and intelligence to engage in therapy. Often, however, the therapist will request written consent from student's parent or guardian to obtain treatment.

Am I able to verify that my student is receiving counseling, or to request information about their counseling sessions?

We can neither confirm nor deny counseling attendance or discuss progress in therapy without a written consent provided by your son or daughter authorizing us to release information. It has been our experience that students vary in their request for parental involvement; we often find that students appreciate parental concern, guidance and acceptance of their particular request for privacy or involvement.

What if I have questions about services or concerns about my student?

CAPS staff is happy to consult with parents regarding general concerns and provide helpful resources and/or community-provider information as appropriate.

Does your center provide referrals to other off-campus service providers?

Yes. CAPS maintains a list of community providers that is available to students upon request or at times when a student has treatment needs that exceed the resources of this center. Parents should consider using providers on their insurance plan.

How long may my student receive services from CAPS?

The typical number of sessions varies. CAPS works under a short term, dynamic model.  It is at the discretion of the therapist (after meeting with the student) to determine next steps.

Who is eligible to see the CAPS consulting psychiatrist?

CAPS contracts with a psychiatrist to provide brief psychiatric treatment. Students must already be in-therapy with a CAPS therapist. Psychiatric consultations are intended for treatment collaboration and psychotropic medication. Once treatment is completed, student is referred to an off-campus psychiatrist. Psychiatric services are not for on-going medication management or refills.