The Bridge Program is a half-day program (periods 1-2) on the campus of Phoenix Academy High School.  The program serves CHCCS-enrolled high school students who are having academic, social and emotional difficulties in the traditional school setting. The program offers a supportive, structured, small classroom environment where students are taught skills to function independently both academically and emotionally. The goal is for successful reintegration to their home school.

 Who are our students?

  • adolescents with depression and anxiety, psychiatric hospitalization, or school refusal/phobia, rather than adolescents with primarily aggressive behaviors, delinquent behaviors, attention difficulties or primary substance abuse problems
  • must have a mental health diagnosis and be receiving current outpatient mental health services

 Who implements the program?

 Two half-time staff support The Bridge Program:

  • mental health specialist     Ann Murphy
  • education specialist           Sandra Lynch-Neagle

 Their role is to assist high school students who have mental health needs with individually-tailored help, counseling, and skills development to make progress toward educational goals.


Students are referred to The Bridge Program by their home high school’s SST (Student Support Team). Once referred, The Bridge Program steering committee reviews the student’s needs to determine student enrollment. This committee includes the program staff, the designated Point Person from each high school, and lead school psychologist.

The Point Person or liaison at each high school assists the student, parent/guardian(s) and The Bridge Program staff with managing both the transition into the program and reintegration back to the home school.

CHCCS High School Point Person

Carrboro                      Kathryn Watson              918-2200, x25040

Chapel Hill                   Jim Wise                         929-2106, x41270

East Chapel Hill          Jerri Fritzo                       969-2482, x27021

Phoenix Academy       Gloria Sanchez-Layne    918-2300, x32296          

Parent/Guardian Participation

Student success depends upon parent/legal guardian involvement. Program staff send weekly emails (or phone calls, if necessary) to parents with updates and suggestions for applying skills in the home setting.