Child & Adolescent Service System Program (CASSP)


CASSP is the Child and Adolescent Service System Program, a philosophy of collaboration and partnership among persons involved with the child/adolescent. CASSP was developed to provide comprehensive mental health care for children, adolescents and their families.


Six ideals guide CASSP and describe how mental health services for children and adolescents should be designed. The CASSP philosophy states that mental health services are:

  • Child-Centered: Services must fit the child, rather than trying to fit the child into an existing service. They should be based on the strengths of the child/family.
  • Community Based: Services ideally are delivered in the child's home community.
  • Culturally Competent: Services are provided by persons who have the skills to recognize and respect the behavior, ideas, attitudes, values, beliefs, customs, language, rituals, ceremonies and practices of a group of people.
  • Family Focused: The family is the primary support system for the child and is an equal partner of the team that makes the decisions and plans treatment.
  • Least Restrictive/Least Intrusive: Services need to be provided in a place and in a way that is most natural for the child and the family.
  • Multi-system: Family members and representatives from all the agencies involved in the child's life should plan the services together and carry out the recommendations.


CASSP is a partnership between the public (tax-funded) agencies that serve children and adolescents. In Lancaster County, six agencies work together in CASSP:

  • Children and Youth Agency
  • Drug and Alcohol Commission
  • Intermediate Unit 13
  • Juvenile Probation and Parole
  • Mental Health / Intellectual Disability / Early Intervention
  • School Districts

The success of CASSP is dependent on the spirit of collaboration among agencies involved and their willingness to work together for the needs of children and adolescents.

  1. Mental Health Administration

    Physical Address
    750 Eden Road
    Lancaster, PA 17601


    Phone: 717-393-0421
    Fax: 717-399-7357

    If you are experiencing a mental health emergency that requires immediate attention, please contact Crisis Intervention at 717-394-2631. 
    Or call the 
    National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.