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Charlotte, NC: District to get $5.6M for more social workers/mental health professionals

Jan 25, 2020, Charlotte (NC) Observer: CMS needs hundreds of social workers to meet national standards. Can county afford them? https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/politics-government/article239608333.htm After securing nearly $5.6 million in county funding, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools hired 25 new social workers for the 2019-2020 academic year — and the district is looking to hire 30 additional mental-health professionals, including counselors and psychologists. But once those positions are filled, CMS will still lack hundreds of staff members who are needed to adequately address social and emotional learning. Staffing deficits at CMS call for recruiting 500 more social workers, as well as 150 counselors and 115 psychologists, according to an analysis provided to the Mecklenburg County commissioners ahead of their annual board retreat next week. … In recent years, the number of students screened for suicide risk at CMS has soared. The district had been on track to reach 3,000 students at risk in 2018, surging from the 2,100 students recorded in 2017…. Commissioner Susan Harden said there is a “profound need” to bolster mental health services at CMS. …