Sept 3, 2018, Salem (MA) News: Schools address mental health needs for students http://www.salemnews.com/news/local_news/schools-address-mental-health-needs-for-students/article_2f51763d-41c6-547c-ad1e-941b2b6cad30.html For a student with anxiety, walking through the front doors of school among hundreds of bustling peers and teachers can be daunting, stressful, and for some just too much. This year, students with anxiety at Danvers High won't have that problem. Instead, students in need of support can use a separate door, right next to the school's new Therapeutic Learning Center, where they'll be met by a teacher, social worker, or aide. Like many local schools, Danvers High has seen an increase in mental health issues among students in recent years, according to Principal Jason Colombino. Schools on the North Shore, and the state, aren't alone as they create programs and hire staff to support students with anxiety and depression. Mental health among teens has become a national concern. After studying programs in Salem and Swampscott, Danvers High is launching its new learning center for students with different mental health needs, including those returning to school after an extended hospital stay, according to Assistant Superintendent Katrina Esparza…. The center will be geared to students who are struggling with anxiety and/or depression — more common issues — according to Esparza. … "I'm really excited for the students who do need that additional support because it has always been available, but now the process to getting it is going to be more streamlined," she said. Mental health across the region According to the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 12.8 percent of adolescents had a major depressive episode that year, meaning for at least two weeks they felt low energy, disengaged, and possibly experienced other symptoms of depression. …
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Children today are noticeably different from previous generations, and the proof is in the news coverage we see every day. This site shows you what’s happening in schools around the world. Children are increasingly disabled and chronically ill, and the education system has to accommodate them. Things we've long associated with autism, like sensory issues, repetitive behaviors, anxiety and lack of social skills, are now problems affecting mainstream students. Blame is predictably placed on bad parenting (otherwise known as trauma from home).
Addressing mental health needs is as important as academics for modern educators. This is an unrecognized disaster. The stories here are about children who can’t learn or behave like children have always been expected to. What childhood has become is a chilling portent for the future of mankind.
Anne Dachel, Media editor, Age of Autism
(John Dachel, Tech. assist.)
What will happen in another 4 years? How can we go on like this? This is a national (and international) problem of monumental proportions. We have an entire new class of children who cannot be accommodated by the system: many are manifestly neurologically impaired. Meanwhile, the government and the medical profession sleep on regardless.
UK media editor, Age of Autism
The generation of American children born after 1990 are arguably the sickest generation in the history of our country.
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
It seemed to me that with rising autism prevalence, you’d also see rising autism costs to society, and it turns out, the costs are catastrophic.
They calculated that in 2015 autism cost the United States $268 billion and they projected that if autism continues at its current rate, we’re looking at one trillion dollars a year in autism costs by 2025, so within five years.
Toby Rogers, PhD, Political economist
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