How to Increase Student Access to Mental Health in the Pandemic

One in 5 students has a mental health issue that keeps them from learning.

If that’s not alarming enough, keep in mind that this statistic is BEFORE the pandemic.

Now, many months into the pandemic, our kids are increasingly at risk for anxiety, depression, and a whole host of learning challenges.

Disrupted social lives, disjointed services and supports students otherwise would have received at school, and isolation from peers is really taking a toll on our youth. Our students in crisis need support, but we also need to think strategically about preventing mental health crises too.

And the reality is, for many students, a school psychologist in the public schools may be the only mental health professional they have available to them.

 

That’s why, especially now with the “pandemic” of social emotional and learning needs,  we need more school psychologists and mental health professionals, such as school social workers and counselors in our public schools.

Watch this 3-minute clip where I joined 9NEWS in Denver to shout out out the incredible work school psychologists are doing, even as we are stretched super thin with high caseloads. I also address why having more school psychologists is actually an equity issue.

We have to start focusing on prevention and early intervention for mental health and learning challenges in our schools. We need to be able to reach ALL kids, no matter what zip code they live in.

But we can’t do it well with nearly triple the recommended caseload ratios.

We can prevent kids from falling through the cracks, but we need more voices to join us to fight for the mental health needs our kids deserve.

If you’re with me and want to help school psychologists help kids THRIVE, head over to Twitter and follow me to join me in advocating and spreading the word about what we do and how we can help–now in the pandemic and beyond.

 

 

 

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