In addition to sharing valuable insights, Nancy’s conversational tone and ability to show vulnerability in her practice brings her listeners in, creates a space for empathy and learning, and inspires us to connect at a deeper level with more people. And, one hopes, we will all make a bigger impact because of that.

— Participant
School Mental Health Course

Dr. Rappaport is available to speak or conduct longer workshops upon request on topics including the following:

  • The Behavior Code: Understanding and Teaching the Most Challenging Students
  • Resilience: Understanding and Teaching Challenging Children Without Burnout
  • Compassion, Burnout, and Empathic Fatigue: Building Resilience in Our Patients and Ourselves
  • “Is This Student Safe to Return?” A Comprehensive School Safety Assessment Approach
  • After a Suicide: Helping Children Heal
  • Teen Depression: What Parents, Schools, and Communities Can Do
  • Finding Our Way: Healing Our Traumatized Children
  • The Power of Reflection: The Role of Narrative in Medicine
  • Advocating for Patients and Educating about Suicide: Drawing from Personal and Clinical Experience

Upcoming Events

February 02, 2023

School Mental Health: Treating Students K-12


Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston, MA

Dr. Rappaport will present “Case: School Avoidance” as part of the two-day conference:

As we enter the third year of the pandemic, the impact on our students is increasingly clear but so too are new solutions and approaches. Mental health needs have skyrocketed among youth, and many schools struggle with burned out teachers and administrators, challenging parents and a lack of mental health providers in schools and their communities. We are eager to come together again in person to share successes and challenges on our collective journey through constant uncertainty.

This course will equip participants with up-to-date knowledge and skills to enhance the emotional well-being of children and adolescents at school, as well as the well-being of larger systems and communities. Topics will cover pandemic effects on learning, navigating LGBTQ+ issues, autism & social communication, polyvagal theory, school avoidance, perfectionism and the impacts of prejudice and other traumas. We are excited to also offer an open ‘Doc Roundtable’ to address questions and concerns related to the latest medications, and a powerful lived experience panel on gun violence and youth activism. Participants will leave with practical and timely clinical information and skills based on emerging research, evidence-based practice and innovative learning strategies.

Mental health and health clinicians, educators, school administrators, researchers and others interested in the development and treatment of school-aged children and adolescents will gain updated knowledge and skills via a mix of didactic lectures, case studies, panel discussions and Q&A.

January 25, 2023

Depression and Suicide: Balancing Risk and Finding Hope and Connection

Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth
Hybrid - Virtual or at Essex North Shore Agricultural and Technical School, Danvers, MA

Nancy Rappaport, M.D., will discuss how depression presents in children and teens at home and at school, how to proceed when concerned a student may be suicidal, and how to support youth with depression. This workshop will include an interactive discussion of clinical cases to illustrate key points.

December 13, 2022 1:30-4pm

The Behaviour Code: Practical Strategies for Working with Challenging Students

Lentegeur Hospital Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service
Lentegeur Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa

Previous Events

October 21, 2021

The Behavior Code: Understanding and Teaching the Most Challenging Students

Rehab Seminars:

This interactive workshop will teach participants about classroom interventions and building resilience for students who have anxiety, depression, or oppositional behavior and who may be explosive, as well as those who have experienced trauma (including the impacts of the pandemic). The morning session will introduce participants to the FAIR Plan method of understanding and improving behavior in challenging students, which looks at the function of the behavior, accommodations, interventions, and response to the behavior. The impact of trauma will also be addressed, and many tools and concrete strategies will be introduced with an emphasis on helping students feel safe to accelerate learning; and strategies for working together with challenging parents to support their students and build better working relationships. Participants will work together on case studies using the information presented in order to deepen their understanding. In the afternoon, following a discussion of understanding and working with depressed students, including those who may be suicidal, the workshop will conclude with a discussion of how we can build resilience in both our students and ourselves. Handouts will include a detailed reference list for further reading on topics covered throughout the day. This workshop will provide the information, skills, and concrete strategies that educators need to make a crucial difference for students with challenging behavior.


Course Objectives

  • Use strategies that enhance relationships with students with challenging behavior as a life-saving connection and address underlying skill deficits

  • List the elements of a FAIR behavior plan

  • Describe why traditional behavior plans of reward and consequences often do not work for students with challenging behavior such as anxiety and oppositional behavior

  • Describe strategies for collaborating with parents, including those who may be disengaged or angry, to build an alliance and give concrete suggestions to help students with challenging behavior

  • List signs and symptoms of depression in children and adolescents

  • Identify steps to take when concerned a student may be suicidal

  • Describe strategies for reintegrating students at school following a hospitalization

  • Describe strategies for building resilience in students

  • Identify tools for building resilience in self and in fellow educators


Course Schedule
8:00-9:30 Understanding and teaching the most challenging students
9:30-10:00 Break
10:00-11:30 Working with challenging students…and challenging parents
11:30-12:30 Lunch
12:30-2:00 Keeping kids alive: working with depressed kids and families
2:00-2:30 Break
2:30-4:00 Building resilience
4:00 Course evaluation
September 30, 2021

Inly School: Parent Conversation

September 27, 2021

Supporting Youth with Depression During the Pandemic and Beyond: What Families, Schools, and Communities Can Do

Massachusetts Partnerships for Youth

Nancy Rapport, M.D., will discuss what depression may look like in teens at home and at school, how to proceed when concerned a teen may be suicidal, and how to connect with and support teens with depression during the pandemic and beyond. She will also discuss how building resilience in both ourselves and in teens boosts our, and their, capacity to endure and perhaps even thrive during uncertain and challenging times. Her talk is based on her many years of clinical experience and experience translating psychiatric concepts into easy actionable steps for educators and families.

June 26, 2021

Resilience in an Uncertain Time: Supporting Students and Families During the Pandemic and Beyond

13th Global Social Thinking Providers Conference

During the pandemic, adults who work with children and families have risen to the challenge of finding new ways to connect, offering practical strategies for coping and thriving, and providing comfort and consistency – all while trying to care for themselves and their own families. Dr. Rappaport will share practical concepts and tools that participants can use to continue this work: maintaining connections, finding contributory activities, communicating in age-appropriate ways, validating questions and worries, balancing structure and rigidity, and supporting those with a history of trauma and challenging home lives. Her suggestions will be based on her many years of clinical experience and experience translating psychiatric concepts into easy actionable steps for educators and families. She will also discuss how taking care of ourselves and building our own resilience allows us to better continue to support children and families and allows us to boost our, and their, capacity to endure and perhaps even thrive during uncertain and challenging times.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Describe strategies for connecting with and supporting students, including those with trauma histories and those who are neurodiverse, during the pandemic
  2. List strategies for building long-term resilience
  3. Describe techniques for addressing children’s worries and anxieties and communicating in age-appropriate ways
June 12, 2021 8:30am-12:30pm

Dancing with Prolonged Pandemic Anxiety: Supporting Students, Families, and Schools

New England Council of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry: Impacts of COVID-19: Child Psychiatric Perspectives
June 02, 2021 7pm

The Possibility of Thriving: What Cancer Can Teach Us About Navigating a Pandemic

Thriving After Cancer: Strategies and State of Mind

Part of the “Thriving After Cancer: Strategies and State of Mind” new survivor webinar series from the Mass General Cancer Center at Newton Wellesley.

Drawing upon my struggles and experiences battling cancer, I’ll explore how connection, community, and nurturing — myself and others — ultimately helped me tap into a creative healing. I’ll also speak to the ways that these lessons helped me navigate the COVID pandemic, acknowledging how unsettling cancer diagnoses can be while celebrating the strength and resilience of those affected by this disease.

Dr. Nancy Rappaport, Child Psychiatrist, Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School

May 26, 2021

Resilience in an Uncertain Time: Supporting Students and Families During the Pandemic and Beyond

Lincoln-Sudbury schools

Dr. Rappaport will give two talks for the Lincoln-Sudbury schools – one for parents on 5/26 and one for educators on 6/9.

During the pandemic, parents and adults who work with children and families have risen to the challenge of finding new ways to connect, offering practical strategies for coping and thriving, and providing comfort and consistency – all while trying to care for themselves and others. Dr. Rappaport will share practical concepts and tools that participants can use to continue this work: maintaining connections, finding contributory activities, communicating in age-appropriate ways, validating questions and worries, balancing structure and rigidity, and supporting those with a history of trauma and challenging home lives. Her suggestions will be based on her many years of clinical experience and experience translating psychiatric concepts into easy actionable steps for educators and families. She will also discuss how taking care of ourselves and building our own resilience allows us to better continue to support children and families and allows us to boost our, and their, capacity to endure and perhaps even thrive during uncertain and challenging times.

Participants will be able to:

  • Describe strategies for connecting with and supporting children, including those with trauma histories and those who are neurodiverse, during the pandemic
  • List strategies for building long-term resilience
  • Describe techniques for addressing children’s worries and anxieties and communicating in age-appropriate ways
May 24, 2021 3pm EDT (12pm PDT)

My Calling into Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

UC San Diego CAP Inclusive Excellence Program

April 29, 2021 6:30pm

Dancing with Pandemic Anxiety: How Parents and Educators Can Support Kids

Norfolk, Plainville, Wrentham & King Philip Schools
April 12, 2021 6:30pm

Nurturing Resilience in Children, Through the Pandemic and Beyond

Womenade Boston

During the pandemic, adults who work with children and families have risen to the challenge of finding new ways to connect, cope, and provide comfort and consistency – all while trying to care for themselves and their own families. Dr. Rappaport will discuss how we can nurture resilience in ourselves and in the children in our lives, boosting our, and their, capacity to endure and perhaps even thrive in uncertain and challenging situations. Based on her many years of clinical experience, she will share practical ways to build resilience: maintaining connections, building a meaningful narrative, finding contributory activities, communicating in age-appropriate ways, validating questions and worries, balancing structure and rigidity, and supporting others, particularly those with a history of trauma.

April 07, 2021 5:30-7pm

Kids Count in Our Community: The Pandemic Hits Home

Mahoney Family Event Fund

The events of the past year have had varying effects on the physical, emotional, social, and mental health of all family members and those who interact with them. Too many families are feeling the strain of toxic stress which has compounded their daily struggles.

This program is designed to inform the community-at-large, especially parents, families, caregivers and teachers, about the impact the pandemic has had on all of us.

On April 7th our expert panelists will discuss the ongoing disruptions, stressors, and anxieties that kids, parents, and teachers are experiencing during this pandemic. Each speaker will offer answers to pressing questions, suggest tools and techniques to mitigate dysfunction and teach positive responses to stress in the home and academic settings.

Panelists include: Dr. Nancy Rappaport, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, Harvard Medical School, speaking on toxic stress; District Attorney Marian Ryan, Middlesex County, reporting on the effects of the pandemic from her justice enforcement perspective and providing support resources; Tammy Bernardi, Prevention Training Specialist at the Children’s Trust, Boston, focusing on child sexual abuse prevention; Koa Goode, LSW Supervisor with Greater Lawrence Community Action Council, addressing effective tools for parenting during stressful times; and Fiona Jensen, Executive Director of Calmer Choice, providing easy meditation tools to promote well-being.

March 23, 2021 7pm

Coping with Covid: Coping with Disappointment and Building Resilience

Mountain Lakes School District Home & School Association
March 04, 2021 12pm

Taking Care of All of our Children: Addressing Harsh Realities and Cultivating Hope

BU School of Medicine Psychiatry Grand Rounds

Presented by:
Olivia Moorehead-Slaughter, PhD
Nancy Rappaport, MD
Martha Vibbert, PhD

An interactive panel drawing on the backgrounds and expertise of a clinical psychologist, a pediatric psychologist, and a child psychiatrist, bringing their extensive experience to address the hardships children face while also accentuating practical steps towards building strong partnerships with parents, addressing power differentials, promoting equity, and cultivating empathy.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Describe the complex multifactorial stressors confronting children
  2. Identify ways to build strength and capacity in systems of care, in order to foster resilience and address power differentials.
  3. Discuss how to increase empathy in parents, children, and providers.
January 29, 2021

School Mental Health: Treating Students K-12

Harvard Medical School

Registration now open!

Given the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic, schools are forced to adapt the ways in which they meet the educational needs as well as to support the emotional wellbeing of students. The course is designed to provide the learner with the evolving understanding of how to recognize the gaps in learning and design appropriate educational interventions. The emphasis is on practical and timely clinical information and skills based on research, including evidence-based practices, and innovative learning strategies. We will use live streaming, electronic Q & A, and other remote learning technologies.

November 12, 2020

Keeping Our Schools Safe: What You Should Know About Safety Assessment

Tufts University School of Medicine Psychiatry Grand Rounds
Online (Zoom)
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