Joplin Globe: School counselors meet; 20% of students have a mental disorder

Feb 4, 2018, Joplin (MO) Globe: Becky Brannock: School counselors meet multiple needs of students I invite you to join me in celebrating the outstanding work of professional school counselors all over America this week, which is designated as National School Counseling Week. This year’s theme is “School Counselors: Helping Students Reach for the Stars.” … The range of concerns facing students today is a very different landscape than it was more than 35 years ago when I first entered the profession as a school counselor. Students in the 21st century juggle a mixture of issues today from suicidal ideation, non-suicidal self injurious behaviors, poverty, homelessness, sexual orientation, substance abuse, physical abuse and neglect, and mental health disorders — just to name a few. We are also learning more than ever today about the detrimental impact that trauma can have on children following them into their adult lives if not addressed. The number of students who enter school with mental health diagnoses is continuing to rise. It is not uncommon for up to 20 percent of our student population to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder, and many of those are not receiving treatment (Center for Disease Control and Prevention). School counselors have an ethical obligation to the students they serve to provide them with the very best services possible. … Becky Brannock, Ph.D., LPC, is a Pittsburg State University professor and school counseling program director for the Department of Psychology and Counseling.