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(Canada) "Demand exceeding supply" for mental health help in schools; it's 'more awareness'

June 25, 2018,Windsor Star: Ontario school survey finds demand for mental health services rising Ontario’s schools are seeing an increasing number of students with mental health issues and principals are frustrated they’re spending too much time on just managing their schools rather than working on student and staff development. … “Mental health services are often inaccessible,” said David Cameron, director of research for People for Education. We’re trying to be proactive in helping students earlier to prevent anxieties from becoming a bigger problem Among elementary schools, 94 per cent reported they’d reached out to local mental health organizations while 100 per cent of secondary schools reported they’d done the same. Twenty six per cent of high school guidance counsellors reported they spent more time on one-on-one counselling regarding mental health issues than anything else. The figure at the elementary level was 20 per cent. … “A lot of (the rising numbers) has to do with more awareness and advocating for help.” … With demand exceeding supply for mental health professionals across the province, boards are also adding more guidance counsellors or creating mental healthcare teams. “The equivalent of eight fulltime guidance positions were added in the budget for the next (school) year,” said Scott Scantlebury, communications officer for the Greater Essex County District School Board. …

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