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TX: CDC report shows 12% of TX high school students "contemplated/attempted suicide" in 2017

July 17, 2018, Dallas News: Texas must ensure students have mental health support https://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/commentary/2018/07/17/texas-must-ensure-students-mental-health-support …In late June as a member of the Public Education Committee, I participated in a two-day joint hearing with Public Health Committee to discuss the safety of our Texas schoolchildren. Experts cited a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report showing that in 2017 nearly one in eight Texas high school students — that's 12 percent — contemplated or attempted suicide. ... Protecting our children begins with supporting their health and well-being, including their mental health. Rates of anxiety and depression among students are on the rise. We've learned that half of all mental illnesses begin showing symptoms by the teenage years. It's critical that mental health professionals are accessible to students to help identify and support those who need help. Different from school counselors who guide our students on issues like testing and college preparedness, mental health professionals are trained psychologists focused on recognizing mental health struggles. … Mental health professionals are a critical resource that is missing from many schools. … If we can save one student's life by having mental health professionals in schools, then it's a worthy investment…. In response the Santa Fe shootings, Gov. Greg Abbott convened a group to study and make recommendations on school safety. One of the three pillars of his plan called for improving mental health assessments and services. …