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Ocean City, NJ: "Mental health problems ...masked by drugs"-'All we're doing is drugging [kids]'

Feb 25, 2018, Ocean City (NJ) Daily: Ocean City Focuses on School Security, Safety http://ocnjdaily.com/ocean-city-focuses-on-school-security-safety/ In the aftermath of the Florida school shooting, Ocean City officials are offering assurances that the local schools are safe for students and employees. Ocean City’s three public schools are protected by a multilayered security system that not only includes physical barriers to prevent intruders from entering the buildings, but also focuses on the mental health of students, officials said. … “The most recent addition of the Wellness Room at Ocean City High School has been a valuable asset to students, and provides a place for someone to listen and help,” school spokeswoman Aimee Schultz said in a statement. During his remarks at the City Council meeting, Gillian maintained that much more needs to be done to address mental health as a way to prevent school violence. However, he added that people are reluctant to discuss mental health, in part because of the stigma attached to it.... Too often, mental health problems in children are masked by drugs, Gillian asserted. The use of medicines should also be accompanied by mental-health counseling for those children, he told City Council. “All we’re doing is drugging them and pretending there is not a problem,” he said.... On Feb. 14, Ocean City’s school district expanded its mental-health program by launching an on-demand video and informational series that helps students and their families navigate through a range of emotional and social issues, Schultz said. “It is our goal to keep families connected and informed about the rapid-paced, ever-changing world in which our students live,” she said. … Essentially, such a clearinghouse would allow schools to compile information about unruly students based on reports by teachers and other people. In turn, the schools would assemble pieces of a puzzle to create a “mosaic” to assess the threat risk posed by those students, Coursen explained. “You basically have all these puzzle pieces scattered around the school,” he said.