This study will implement a school-based program to prevent depression, academic failure,
and substance use in at-risk adolescents transitioning from middle school to high school.
The transition from middle school to high school presents important challenges for
adolescents. Programs that enhance personal efficacy and social support resources may
prevent at-risk students from developing behaviors that can lead to substance use, academic
failure, and depression. This study will implement a skills-based program called Coping and
Support Training for the Transition (CAST-T) as a preventive intervention for at-risk
At-risk students in eighth grade will be randomly assigned to receive either CAST-T or
school as usual. The CAST-T program will initially be delivered in twelve sessions over 6
weeks in the middle school setting. The program includes booster sessions, case management,
structured home-based parent education, and support and skills training throughout the
transition period. Participants will be assessed from the beginning of eighth grade to the
end of ninth grade. Vulnerability to academic problems and depression will be assessed with
school records and self-report scale scores.
- At-risk for substance abuse, academic failure, and depression
- Enrolled in eighth grade in Seattle Public Schools