Aug 31, 2018, Philadelphia Tribune: School trains staff in youth mental health first aid http://www.phillytrib.com/news/school-trains-staff-in-youth-mental-health-first-aid/article_8455b339-ee23-5d5c-8c62-ded678ccc535.html A Pennsylvania task force on school safety recommends better access to mental health services — including age-appropriate materials for students and teachers. Heeding that advice, Philadelphia’s String Theory Charter Schools hosted a day of mental health first aid training for its teachers and staff. At an event Tuesday, hundreds took part in the instruction provided by the city’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services and a national mental health awareness organization called Project 375. Malik Gray, a supervisor in Philadelphia’s Mental Health First Aid Unit, says it’s important to train adults to understand what causes kids to act out rather than criminalizing that behavior. “We look at the behaviors that we see developing in adolescents and being able to differentiate between, ‘Hey, typical behavior’ versus ‘Hey, something’s not right here with this young person. What’s going on?’” Gray said. “It’s all about understanding what are those signs and symptoms, being able to recognize it, and then knowing what are the next steps. How do I connect this young person and their family, for that matter, with the proper services?”… More than 250 people filled the auditorium of the Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School, after morning breakout sessions, to hear Michi Marshall speak, as part of learning how to better address students’ mental health needs….
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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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