Measure A cash to fund psychological well being program for Metropolis workers

Over $400,000 of Measure A will be used to help City of Turlock employees take care of their mental well-being after council members approved a contract on Tuesday.

In a 4-1 vote against Deputy Mayor Pam Franco, the city council approved a service agreement between the city and Florida-based company Performance on Purpose during its first meeting of the new year. Responding to a call for proposals prepared at the request of the council, Performance on Purpose is asking for $417,994 to implement a voluntary mental wellbeing program for city employees.

According to the company’s website, Performance on Purpose’s mission is to “equip leaders and their teams with the tools to reach their highest potential by providing science-based behavior change solutions to improve well-being and performance.”

“People understand that mental health is a business-critical conversation that needs to be had, and that people cannot do their jobs unless they are supported by the resources they need,” said Lauren Hodges, co-founder of Performance on Purpose , to the Council. “And that often has to come from the workplace.”

Two other companies also responded to the bid with cost estimates of $293,235 and $197,700 for the mental wellbeing program, but Performance on Purpose was rejected by City employees for its “strong strategy” and use of “the latest science and research to… human performance” recommended. according to the staff report.

Through the program, city tours and staff have the opportunity to participate in a variety of offerings, including live, in-person retreats (guided only), biometric screenings, performance coaching, and a variety of virtual programs on topics such as nutrition, stress management, and meditation, to name a few to name.

The nearly $420,000 bill will be funded with money from Measure A, a citywide sales tax approved by Turlock voters in the November 2020 election that is expected to generate $11 million in annual revenue.

Eight areas were listed in the Measure A Order – “Protecting Turlock’s long-term financial stability, maintaining and restoring public safety services, prompt emergency and medical assistance to 911, fire safety, repairing roads and potholes, supporting local businesses, Addressing challenges of homelessness and vagrancy and protecting Turlock’s ability to respond to emergencies and natural disasters.”

The program was originally intended to be funded by COVID relief funds from the American Rescue Plan Act, but Council Member Andrew Nosrati requested use of Measure A funds instead as the council continues to explore the best ways to use relief funds. In addition, business owners and community members called to express their dissatisfaction with the use of ARPA funds for the program.

“I’m not judging this presentation; It sounds like it could be a good thing,” said Lori Smith, owner of Main Street Antiques. “…But from what I’ve read, it looks to me like this could probably be about 300 people, and so much of it is voluntary…You have no way of knowing how many people it actually is will use… Can we use it? $400,000 so the public can benefit a little more?”

Councilor Nicole Larson expressed hesitation in approving such an agreement without a city manager selected, after which Mayor Amy Bublak assured her that one would be selected in two to four weeks. The original point has also been changed to say that the program will not begin until the new city manager is in place and the new leader will be the one who will work with Performance on Purpose to implement it.

“My values ​​are that as leaders we have a responsibility to ensure our employees are physically and mentally healthy and capable of providing the best service to our constituents,” Bublak said. “…We sit in a time where we are losing a lot of people who no longer want to work because of the things that have happened in COVID… This is our way of showing them our appreciation. ”

Group Golf Remedy artwork sequence raises cash for psychological well being

Group golf therapy is a team of developers dedicated to uncovering the link between golf and mental health.

The founders of GGT are former college golfers, Bradford Wilson, Connor Laubenstein and Drew Westphal. Each of them are on individual journeys to redefine their relationship with the game and have deeper golf conversations.

Group Golf Therapy has partnered with three artists to raise funds for various mental health organizations. You named this art series Mind Your Golf. Every piece is abstract, playful and all wins come from that National Queer & Trans Therapists of Color Network, that Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation, and Courage Milwaukee. Each piece is priced at $ 36.

GGT Mind Your Golf by Tony Knapton. (Tony Knapton)

GGT Mind Your Golf by Luke Schaffner. (Lukas Schaffner)

the Group golf therapy podcast is available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, and Podbean. You will have great discussions with current and former professional golfers, golf industry professionals, golf enthusiasts and mental health experts.

Occasionally we recommend interesting products, services and play opportunities. When you make a purchase by clicking on any of the links we can earn an affiliate fee. However, Golfweek operates independently and this does not affect our reporting.

San Antonians say psychological well being, housing, and infrastructure amongst finest methods to spend pandemic aid cash

SAN ANTONIO – As the San Antonio City Council decides how to spend the remaining $ 199.4 million in unallocated money from the American Rescue Plan Act, parishioners have made their wishes known.

In a presentation on Thursday to the council members, the city officials presented the results of the various surveys, town hall meetings and meetings with the Small Business Advocacy Commission from the previous months. Housing, infrastructure and economic development were high on the list of immediate spending priorities for community members, while they said mental health, housing and quality childcare were their preferred long-term investments.

The SBAC listed priorities such as access to capital, such as grants or loans; Capacity building through vocational training and financial literacy; and promoting art and tourism.

The city has been allocated $ 326.9 million in ARPA dollars, half of which it has already received. The other half is expected to be received in May 2022.

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The city is allowed to use the money for a variety of purposes, including: balancing budget constraints; pay for the public health response to the pandemic; Payment of bonuses for important employees; and water, sewer and broadband infrastructure works.

The city has already committed $ 97.5 million to fill budget gaps from lost revenue over three fiscal years. Council too Set aside $ 30 million to help people in arrears with their electricity and water bills.

On Thursday, city officials recommended allocating $ 35 million to the city’s COVID-19 response, $ 35.95 million for “immediate” community needs and $ 128.45 million for “effective investment.”

POSSIBLE BONUS FOR CITY WORKERS

City officials suggested two “premium payment” options for city workers, for the several council members had asked.

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Depending on their annual income, the first plan would pay employees a bonus of up to $ 3,000 if they worked on-site in the 12 months between March 2020 and March 2021.

This plan would cost $ 10 million and cover 5,920 eligible employees.

However, City Manager Erik Walsh had employees come up with a second plan that would cover all employees – 11,760 of them – and pay up to $ 2,000, depending on their hire date and annual earnings. This plan would cost $ 14.3 million.

“But from my point of view, I think we should treat everyone equally from the point of view of employees,” said Walsh.

While not all city employees would meet the ARPA guidelines for premium payment, which are intended for those who had to work in person during the pandemic, city employees could justify this by using the “revenue replacement” category.

Some councilors called for a third option that would still cover all 11,760 employees but offer a relatively higher bonus for the 5,920 who had to come to work.

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City officials noted that none of the other major Texas cities had yet chosen to use ARPA money for bonuses.

NEXT STEPS

The city council has yet to approve the overall framework for the use of the money. This is expected to happen in a February 3rd vote after the city council made adjustments based on Thursday’s discussion.

Thereafter, the council members will assist through various sub-committees in deciding which programs to fund the ARPA money.

Copyright 2021 by KSAT – All rights reserved.

Firefighter bikes coast to coast to boost cash for psychological well being providers

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – This one-of-a-kind team, a man, a dog, and his bike, travel 3,700 miles across the country to raise funds and raise awareness about mental health issues.

You will traverse a total of eight states on a route known as the “Southern Tier” that begins in San Diego, California and ends in St. Augustine, Florida.

Kevin Conley Jr. and his dog Rocky made their way to El Paso as they begin the long stretch of the Lone Star State.

The goal was to improve yourself and for a greater purpose.

“My original goal was to get my mind free to clear all the pain and suffering my mind was going through, and I wanted to give back for a bigger cause,” said Conley Jr.

That purpose is to raise money for the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, a foundation that focuses on helping families of firefighters killed on duty and helping injured firefighters and their families.

Conley Jr. is a wilderness firefighter who has his own struggles, and Rocky loves to help and join.

“He’s always there for me, this is my best friend here,” said Conley Jr.

He says that although his mental health motivated him to start, he wants to get it not about him: “It’s about children who never speak to their father again and women who never speak to their best friend again become … I just want to raise money for the Wildlife Firefighter Foundation so that we can give something back to this world. “

To donate to Kevin’s and Rocky’s fundraiser, click here Donation to Kevin’s and Rocky’s Southern Tier, 3,700 Mile Drive for the Mental Health of Wildland Firefighters – Wildland Firefighter Foundation (givecloud.co)

For local and breaking news, sports, weather alerts, videos, and more, download the FREE KTSM 9 news app from the. down Apple App Store or the Google Play Store.

With Assist Cash, US Faculties Place Consideration on Psychological Well being

Schools in the United States are using a large increase in federal funding to support student mental health.

School systems or districts are given a lot of freedom in how they can spend the federal money. But psychological problems in the students had become clear. Districts have an increase in behavioral problems, and signs of stress Absenteeism when students returned to class this fall. For many, it was the first time back in a full classroom since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Kansas City, Kansas, educators open an after-school mental health center. The center is filled with advisor and social workers. Schools in Chicago, Illinois have “mentoring teams” on a mission to help students in difficulty.

In some school districts, the money has supported longstanding work to help students deal with trauma – difficult experiences that have led to emotional problems. Other school systems have made new efforts to treat students. Overall, money puts public schools at the center of efforts to improve the overall well-being of students.

When the government sent aid to schools after the economic recession in 2008, conversation didn’t happen, ”said Amanda Fitzgerald. She is with the American School Counselor Association. Now, according to Fitzgerald, the discussion across the country is very much about student welfare.

Last month, three major child health groups said the child mental health situation should be viewed as a national emergency. The U.S. Department of Education has called on the aid to rethink the way schools offer psychological support. Education Minister Miguel Cardona said mental health needs to be at the center of recovery from the pandemic.

Pandemic aid to schools is $ 190 billion. That’s more than four times what the Department of Education normally spends kindergarten up to 12th grade every year. The money for mental health services went towards employee training, mental health assessments, and classes that include social and emotional learning.

Fifth grader Jordan Falconbury reads in a tent while visiting a sensory room at Quincy Elementary School in Topeka, Kansas on Wednesday, November 3, 2021 (AP Photo / Charlie Riedel)

Many counties have worked on it rent more mental health experts. The National Association of School Psychologists surveyed its members in the fall. It found that more than half of the districts had plans to host social workers, Psychologists or consultant.

With $ 9.5 million in federal and external grants, Paterson Schools in New Jersey added five behavioral experts. The district also hired two substance abuse experts and workers who were able to identify students in crisis.

Paterson is one of the poorest parts of New Jersey. Many of the 25,000 students there were hungry before the pandemic and struggled after family members lost their jobs, Superintendent Eileen Shafer said.

“We wanted to make sure that before we tried to teach anything new, we could handle where our kids are based on what they went through,” she said.

In Ellicottville, New York, school psychologist Joe Prior sees more anxiety among students. He said the district would use the help to hire a counselor to connect students with psychological help.

Chicago, the third largest school district in the country, created a “cure plan” for students using $ 24 million of the $ 2.6 billion in federal aid.

In Detroit, the district spends $ 34 million on mental health programs. The school system uses the money to screen students, expand help from outside mental health providers, and provide additional support to parents.

On a last Wednesday that meant an hour meditation Parents meet at a local cafe. One parent feared that their own stress was affecting their son’s ability to learn.

“As a community, we’ve all been through something,” said Sharlonda Buckman, an assistant superintendent who attended the meeting. “Part of the recovery has to be something” intentionally work in spaces like this so we can be there for ours children. “

I am Dan Novak.

The Associated Press and Chalkbeat covered this story. Dan Novak adapted it for VOA Learning English. Ashley Thompson was the editor.

Quiz – U.S. schools use aid funds to monitor mental health


Start the quiz to find out

________________________________________

Words in this story

absent – adj. not present in a usual or expected place

advisor – n. a person who provides professional advice

conversation – n. an informal conversation with two people or a small group of people: the act of informal conversation

kindergarten – n. a school or class for very young children

rent – v. Giving (someone) a job or a job in exchange for wages or salaries

psychologist – n. a scientist who specializes in the study and treatment of mind and behavior

anxiety – n. Fear or nervousness about what might happen

meditation– n. the act or process of spending time in silent thought

intentionally – adj. be done in a planned or intended manner

child – n. a young person

With US Assist Cash, Colleges Put Larger Concentrate on Psychological Well being

In Kansas City, Kansas, educators open an after-school mental health clinic staffed with school counselors and social workers. Schools in Paterson, New Jersey have set up socio-emotional learning teams to identify students dealing with crisis. Chicago sets up “mentoring teams” with a mission to help students in difficulty on its 500+ campuses.

With a stroke of luck in federal coronavirus relief funds, schools in the United States are using parts to quickly expand their capacity to deal with students’ mental health issues.

While school districts have plenty of leeway in using the aid funds, the urgency of the problem has been made clear by absenteeism, behavioral issues and quieter signs of distress as many students hit for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic this fall.

In some school systems, the money has fueled longstanding trauma-coping work. Others have made new efforts to screen, counsel, and treat students. All in all, investment has put public schools at the center of efforts for the general welfare of students more than ever.

“In the last recession, with the last big chunk of recovery money, that conversation didn’t take place,” said Amanda Fitzgerald, assistant director of the American School Counselor Association. “Now the tone is very much geared towards the well-being of the students across the country.”

Last month, three major pediatric groups said the state of children’s mental health should be considered a national emergency. The US Department of Education has pointed out aid distribution to rethink how schools provide psychological support. Mental wellbeing, said Education Minister Miguel Cardona, must be the foundation for recovery from the pandemic.

Pandemic aid to schools is $ 190 billion, more than four times the amount the Department of Education typically spends annually on K-12 schools. Investments in mental health have gone into employee training, wellness screenings and curricula for social-emotional learning.

Questions remain, however, as to how schools will find ways to reap the benefits beyond the one-time cash injection, address privacy concerns, and track the effectiveness of their efforts. The implementation worries Katie Dockweiler, a Nevada school psychologist who sits on the state education committee.

“Not all programs are created equal,” she said. “It really depends on how it is implemented, school by school. And there is a lot of variability.”

She said the districts should develop ways to track the impact on students: “Otherwise we’ll just throw our money away.”

At the top of the list for many districts is the recruitment of new mental health specialists. When the National Association of School Psychologists surveyed members this fall, more than half of those polled said their districts intend to add social workers, psychologists or counselors, according to policy director Kelly Vaillancourt Strobach.

With $ 9.5 million in federal aid and outside grants, the Paterson Schools added five behavioral analysts, two substance abuse coordinators, and the teams to identify students in crisis situations.

In Paterson, one of the lowest-income parts of New Jersey, many of the 25,000 college students faced food insecurity prior to the pandemic and struggled after family members lost their jobs, Superintendent Eileen Shafer said.

“Before we tried to teach anything new, we wanted to make sure we were able to navigate where our children are based on what they’ve been through,” she said.

A student works on a puzzle while visiting a French middle school sensory room in Topeka, Kansas on Wednesday, November 3, 2021. The rooms are designed to relieve student stress when they return to classrooms amid the ongoing pandemic.

In rural Ellicottville, New York, where school psychologist Joe Prior sees more anxiety and a “marked increase” in panic attacks, the district plans to hire a life-saving agent to connect students with psychological help. But the position remains vacant as only a few have expressed interest.

“I have more students who just look into my eyes and say, ‘I’m completely overwhelmed and don’t know how to deal with it,'” said Erich Ploetz, headmaster of Ellicottville High School.

It’s not the only district where hiring ambitions have exceeded the number of skilled workers available. Some districts have turned to outside providers to fill mental health positions while others are training existing staff.

The Kansas City, Kansas school system is using a portion of the $ 918,000 mental health grant to pay for social workers and counselors who are already on the job at the new afternoon clinic. The district has also added staff and mental health exams.

Angela Dunn, who leads mental health and suicide prevention initiatives for the 22,000 student district, said the mental health team has responded to 27 student deaths and 16 employee deaths since the pandemic began, double the number over that period typical. She said a handful of employees died from COVID-19, but many of the others were murders, suicides and overdoses.

A student shares her feelings while visiting a sensory room at Williams Elementary School on November 3, 2021 in Topeka, Kansas.

Schools’ investments in student mental health services have raised some privacy concerns, particularly where schools are now monitoring student computers for distress signals or performing mental health tests on all students. But the notion that it’s not where schools can get involved at all has been forgotten.

“We just realized that students like to go to school to seek help,” said Dunn.

Chicago, the country’s third largest school district, unveiled a “cure plan” for high school students using $ 24 million of its $ 2.6 billion in stimulus funds.

Over the course of three years, the district will expand “mentoring teams” – construction personnel who serve as the first point of contact for students in difficulty – to each campus. 200 schools are to be reached by spring.

The headmistress Angélica Altamirano used some of these funds to open a room that is furnished with comfortable furniture and a used air hockey table. The campus center has already offered mourning groups for deceased students or friends and helped teachers deal with burnout.

In Topeka, Kansas, $ 100,000 was allocated for soothing items and sensory room personnel, including one at the Quincy Elementary. When students are so frustrated that they lay their heads on their desks, wander into the hallway, or cry, teachers can send them to the Roadrunner Room. There they can climb into a tent and snuggle under a weighted blanket, put together a puzzle, play with sand or build with Legos.

The Dean of Studies Andrea Keck observed how the room became a point of contact for a student in order to reduce frustrations.

“She can log it, have her hair pinned up, whatever she needs, and then she can be successful for the rest of the day,” says Keck, who oversees the room.

In Detroit, the district is spending $ 34 million on mental health initiatives, including screening high school students, expanding help from outside mental health providers, and providing additional support for parents.

Last Wednesday, that meant an hour-long meditation session for parents in a local coffee shop. One participant feared that her own stress was affecting her son’s ability to learn.

“As a community, we’ve all been through something,” said Sharlonda Buckman, an assistant superintendent who attended the meeting. “Part of recovery has to be deliberate work in spaces like this so we can be there for our children.”

With U.S. help cash, faculties put larger deal with psychological well being

CHICAGO – Educators are opening an after-school mental health clinic in Kansas City, Kansas, staffed with school counselors and social workers. Schools in Paterson, New Jersey have set up socio-emotional learning teams to identify students dealing with crisis. Chicago sets up “mentoring teams” with a mission to help students in difficulty on its 500+ campuses.

With a stroke of luck in federal coronavirus relief funds, schools in the United States are using parts to quickly expand their capacity to deal with students’ mental health issues.

While school districts have plenty of leeway in using the aid funds, the urgency of the problem has been made clear by absenteeism, behavioral issues and quieter signs of distress as many students hit for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic this fall.

In some school systems, the money has fueled longstanding trauma-coping work. Others have made new efforts to screen, counsel, and treat students. All in all, investment has put public schools at the center of efforts for the general welfare of students more than ever.

“In the last recession, with the last big chunk of recovery money, that conversation didn’t take place,” said Amanda Fitzgerald, assistant director of the American School Counselor Association. “Now the tone is very much geared towards the well-being of the students across the country.”

Last month, three major pediatric groups said the state of children’s mental health should be considered a national emergency. The US Department of Education has pointed out aid distribution to rethink how schools provide psychological support. Mental wellbeing, said Education Minister Miguel Cardona, must be the foundation for recovery from the pandemic.

Pandemic aid to schools is $ 190 billion, more than four times the amount the Department of Education typically spends annually on K-12 schools. Investments in mental health have gone into employee training, wellness screenings and curricula for social-emotional learning.

Questions remain, however, as to how schools will find ways to reap the benefits beyond the one-time cash injection, address privacy concerns, and track the effectiveness of their efforts. The implementation worries Katie Dockweiler, a Nevada school psychologist who sits on the state education committee.

“Not all programs are created equal,” she said. “It really depends on how it’s done, school by school. And there is a great deal of variability. “

She said the districts should develop ways to track the impact on students: “Otherwise we’ll just throw our money away.”

At the top of the list for many districts is the recruitment of new mental health specialists. When the National Association of School Psychologists surveyed members this fall, more than half of those polled said their districts intend to add social workers, psychologists or counselors, according to policy director Kelly Vaillancourt Strobach.

With $ 9.5 million in federal aid and outside grants, the Paterson Schools added five behavioral analysts, two substance abuse coordinators, and the teams to identify students in crisis situations.

In Paterson, one of the lowest-income parts of New Jersey, many of the 25,000 college students faced food insecurity prior to the pandemic and struggled after family members lost their jobs, Superintendent Eileen Shafer said.

“Before we tried to teach anything new, we wanted to make sure we could handle where our kids are based on what they’ve been through,” she said.

In rural Ellicottville, New York, where school psychologist Joe Prior sees more anxiety and a “marked increase” in panic attacks, the district plans to hire a life-saving agent to connect students with psychological help. But the position remains vacant as only a few have expressed interest.

“I have more students who just look into my eyes and say, ‘I’m completely overwhelmed and don’t know how to deal with it,'” said Erich Ploetz, Headmaster of Ellicottville High School.

It’s not the only district where hiring ambitions have exceeded the number of skilled workers available. Some districts have turned to outside providers to fill mental health positions while others are training existing staff.

The Kansas City, Kansas school system is using a portion of the $ 918,000 mental health grant to pay for social workers and counselors who are already on the job at the new afternoon clinic. The district has also added staff and mental health exams.

Angela Dunn, who leads mental health and suicide prevention initiatives for the 22,000 student district, said the mental health team has responded to 27 student deaths and 16 employee deaths since the pandemic began, double the number over that period typical. She said a handful of employees died from COVID-19, but many of the others were murders, suicides and overdoses.

Schools’ investments in student mental health services have raised some privacy concerns, particularly where schools are now monitoring student computers for distress signals or performing mental health tests on all students. But the notion that it’s not where schools can get involved at all has been forgotten.

“We just realized that students are comfortable seeking help in a school,” said Dunn.

Chicago, the third largest school district in the country, unveiled a “cure plan” for high school students using $ 24 million of its $ 2.6 billion in stimulus funds.

Over the course of three years, the district will expand “mentoring teams” – construction personnel who serve as the first response to students in difficulty – to each campus. 200 schools are to be reached by spring.

The headmistress Angélica Altamirano used some of these funds to open a room that is furnished with comfortable furniture and a used air hockey table. The campus center has already offered mourning groups for deceased students or friends and helped teachers deal with burnout.

In Topeka, Kansas, $ 100,000 was allocated for soothing items and sensory room personnel, including one at the Quincy Elementary. When students are so frustrated that they lay their heads on their desks, wander into the hallway, or cry, teachers can send them to the Roadrunner Room. There they can climb into a tent and snuggle under a weighted blanket, put together a puzzle, play with sand or build with Legos.

The Dean of Studies Andrea Keck observed how the room became a point of contact for a student in order to reduce frustrations.

“She can log it, have her hair pinned up, whatever she needs, and then she can be successful for the rest of the day,” says Keck, who oversees the room.

In Detroit, the district is spending $ 34 million on mental health initiatives, including screening high school students, expanding help from outside mental health providers, and providing additional support for parents.

Last Wednesday, that meant an hour-long meditation session for parents in a local coffee shop. One participant feared that her own stress was affecting her son’s ability to learn.

“As a community, we’ve all been through something,” said Sharlonda Buckman, an assistant superintendent who attended the meeting. “Part of recovery has to be deliberate work in spaces like this so we can be there for our children.”

With US support cash, colleges put greater concentrate on psychological well being

CHICAGO (AP) – Educators are opening an after-school mental health clinic in Kansas City, Kansas, staffed with school counselors and social workers. Schools in Paterson, New Jersey have set up socio-emotional learning teams to identify students dealing with crisis. Chicago sets up “mentoring teams” with a mission to help students in difficulty on its 500+ campuses.

With a stroke of luck in federal coronavirus relief funds, schools in the United States are using parts to quickly expand their capacity to deal with students’ mental health issues.

While the school districts have a lot of leeway in how to spend the aid, the urgency of the problem was evident Absenteeism, behavior problems, and quieter signs of stress So many students returned to school buildings for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic this fall.

In some school systems, the money has fueled longstanding trauma-coping work. Others have made new efforts to screen, counsel, and treat students. All in all, investment has put public schools at the center of efforts for the general welfare of students more than ever.

“In the last recession, with the last big chunk of recovery money, that conversation didn’t take place,” said Amanda Fitzgerald, assistant director of the American School Counselor Association. “Now the tone is very much geared towards the well-being of the students across the country.”

Last month, three major pediatric groups said the state of children’s mental health should be considered a national emergency. The US Department of Education has pointed out aid distribution to rethink how schools provide psychological support. Mental wellbeing, said Education Minister Miguel Cardona, must be the foundation for recovery from the pandemic.

Pandemic aid to schools is $ 190 billion, more than four times the amount the Department of Education typically spends annually on K-12 schools. Investments in mental health have gone into employee training, wellness screenings and curricula for social-emotional learning.

Questions remain, however, as to how schools will find ways to reap the benefits beyond the one-time cash injection, address privacy concerns, and track the effectiveness of their efforts. The implementation worries Katie Dockweiler, a Nevada school psychologist who sits on the state education committee.

“Not all programs are created equal,” she said. “It really depends on how it’s done, school by school. And there is a great deal of variability. “

She said the districts should develop ways to track the impact on students: “Otherwise we’ll just throw our money away.”

At the top of the list for many districts is the recruitment of new mental health specialists. When the National Association of School Psychologists surveyed members this fall, more than half of those polled said their districts intend to add social workers, psychologists or counselors, according to policy director Kelly Vaillancourt Strobach.

With $ 9.5 million in federal aid and outside grants, the Paterson Schools added five behavioral analysts, two substance abuse coordinators, and the teams to identify students in crisis situations.

In Paterson, one of the lowest-income parts of New Jersey, many of the 25,000 college students faced food insecurity prior to the pandemic and struggled after family members lost their jobs, Superintendent Eileen Shafer said.

“Before we tried to teach anything new, we wanted to make sure we could handle where our kids are based on what they’ve been through,” she said.

In rural Ellicottville, New York, where school psychologist Joe Prior sees more anxiety and a “marked increase” in panic attacks, the district plans to hire a life-saving agent to connect students with psychological help. But the position remains vacant as only a few have expressed interest.

“I have more students who just look into my eyes and say, ‘I’m completely overwhelmed and don’t know how to deal with it,'” said Erich Ploetz, Headmaster of Ellicottville High School.

It’s not the only district where hiring ambitions have exceeded the number of skilled workers available. Some districts have turned to outside providers to fill mental health positions while others are training existing staff.

The Kansas City, Kansas school system is using a portion of the $ 918,000 mental health grant to pay for social workers and counselors who are already on the job at the new afternoon clinic. The district has also added staff and mental health exams.

Angela Dunn, who leads mental health and suicide prevention initiatives for the 22,000 student district, said the mental health team has responded to 27 student deaths and 16 employee deaths since the pandemic began, double the number over that period typical. She said a handful of employees died from COVID-19, but many of the others were murders, suicides and overdoses.

Schools’ investments in student mental health services have raised some privacy concerns, particularly where schools are now monitoring student computers for distress signals or performing mental health tests on all students. But the notion that it’s not where schools can get involved at all has been forgotten.

“We just realized that students are comfortable seeking help in a school,” said Dunn.

Chicago, the third largest school district in the country, unveiled a “cure plan” for high school students using $ 24 million of its $ 2.6 billion in stimulus funds.

Over the course of three years, the district will expand “mentoring teams” – construction personnel who serve as the first response to students in difficulty – to each campus. 200 schools are to be reached by spring.

The headmistress Angélica Altamirano used some of these funds to open a room that is furnished with comfortable furniture and a used air hockey table. The campus center has already offered mourning groups for deceased students or friends and helped teachers deal with burnout.

In Topeka, Kansas, $ 100,000 was allocated for soothing items and sensory room personnel, including one at the Quincy Elementary. When students are so frustrated that they lay their heads on their desks, wander into the hallway, or cry, teachers can send them to the Roadrunner Room. There they can climb into a tent and snuggle under a weighted blanket, put together a puzzle, play with sand or build with Legos.

The Dean of Studies Andrea Keck observed how the room became a point of contact for a student in order to reduce frustrations.

“She can log it, have her hair pinned up, whatever she needs, and then she can be successful for the rest of the day,” says Keck, who oversees the room.

In Detroit, the district is spending $ 34 million on mental health initiatives, including screening high school students, expanding help from outside mental health providers, and providing additional support for parents.

Last Wednesday, that meant an hour-long meditation session for parents in a local coffee shop. One participant feared that her own stress was affecting her son’s ability to learn.

“As a community, we’ve all been through something,” said Sharlonda Buckman, an assistant superintendent who attended the meeting. “Part of recovery has to be deliberate work in spaces like this so we can be there for our children.”

___

Thompson reported from Ellicottville, New York and Hollingsworth from Mission, Kansas. Chalkbeat writers Catherine Carrera in Newark, New Jersey, Cassie Walker Burke in Chicago and Lori Higgins in Detroit, and Associated Press writer Collin Binkley in Boston contributed to this report.

Bent Paddle Serving to Increase Cash, Consciousness of Psychological Well being Providers with New Beer Launch Thursday

$ 1 for every pint and $ 5 for every growler or crowler of the new Pay It Forward Pale Ale purchased goes back to Amberwing.

DULUTH, Minn .– Experts Say Mental Health Problems in Children and Adolescents are On the Rise. So an organization and a brewery are working together to promote a new beer that is raising money for mental health resources.

Bell Bank’s Pay-It-Forward Launch Party at Bent Paddle Brewing this Thursday is raising funds for Amberwing, a Duluth-based center for the wellbeing of youth and families.

In a survey sent by the organization, the results showed that the prevalence of depression in the Duluth area has increased by 25% among those under 35 since the beginning of the pandemic.

Experts there said it is important to spot signs that your child is suffering from depression and anxiety, such as: For example, staying home from school more, isolating yourself, or feeling more sad or anxious in general.

“The earlier the intervention, the more effectively the children can learn the skills that we teach at Amberwing and apply them in everyday life,” says Becky Hoversten-Mellem, Clinical Supervisor.

They say one of the barriers was that it was embarrassing to seek help, and even 18% reported the cost of treatment or didn’t know where to go.

Organizers say everyone should know about the mental health resources in the city and reach out to them when needed.

“It’s important for the community to know that it’s okay to ask for help,” said Hoversten-Mellem. “Don’t hold back when you’re having trouble, let an adult know you need help.”

Bent Paddle’s new Pay It Forward Pale Ale will be unveiled at Thursday’s event. $ 1 for every pint and $ 5 for every Growler or Crowler purchased goes back to Amberwing for approximately the next month.

“We’re always looking for ways to bring people together and solve problems, and for many, many, many eons a lot of this has been done over a pint,” said Pepin Young, director of the taproom and retail operations.

The event runs from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Profitable, Cash Saving Summit County Psychological Well being Program Grabs Consideration Of Colorado Leaders – CBS Denver

DILLON, Colorado (CBS4) – A program in Summit County aimed at responding to those in the midst of mental crisis has caught the attention of state leaders. Earlier this month, Governor Jared Polis traveled to Dillon to speak with community leaders about what makes the Summit County model so successful.

Governor Jared Polis and other heads of state meet with community leaders in Summit County. (Credit: CBS)

“First and foremost, we’re building it up from the community, not the law enforcement down, which is really important,” said Jaime FitzSimons, Summit County sheriff.

The SMART program, or System-wide Mental Assessment Response, was launched in Summit County just last year, and FitzSimons said it was an idea put forward by the community and tailored to the needs of the Summit County community. That is what makes it unique, but also what makes it work.

“There’s a lot of community support with this team. The other thing is that it’s a plainclothes answer, which means they don’t show up in uniform. They show up as a team and they show up in plain clothes, an unmarked car, and they go to all the cities here in the Summit County jurisdictions, so it’s a nationwide response, ”he said.

The response always includes a deputy paired with a clinician. This is the co-response part of the program, but it goes beyond that initial contact.

“You have a third component in your team, the case manager, so I always describe it as a deputy and clinician in times of crisis. You have the focus in the moment of crisis and stabilization – and stabilize this person in the community. At the back end is the case manager who comes now and provides the all-round service for further stabilization, ”said FitzSimons.

(Credit: CBS)

Over the past 10 months, the joint response has saved hundreds of people from landing in the emergency room, saved the emergency room from overflowing, and saved the county money. FitzSimons and his team estimate that for every person they can help avoid a trip to the emergency room, the county will save about $ 15,000.

“This year it was just over $ 2 million for the first 10 months of this year. It’s a huge number, but more importantly, how many people we’ve stabilized rather than sending people to higher levels of care or destroying our emergency room. We have stabilized an incredible number of people, what we say ‘on the spot’, be it at home, wherever that place is, but not going to a higher level of care, that has crushed the community. “

FitzSimons believes any ward can accept the program and make it successful, but what works in Summit County will likely be different for Denver. In Summit County, the start-up cost of the program is around $ 425,000, and while it was a successful program, funding has been one of the biggest hurdles.