One in five children in the United States show every year symptoms of mental health problems. However, almost 80% of minors that need attention in mental health don’t receive it.  Among young people, the prevalence of medical conditions for developing a mental disorder is greater than the conditions for developing a physical disease, such as asthma or diabetes.

Some problems, such as truancy, low results or negative behaviours can be linked with mental health problems in students. That is the reason why experts say schools can have a key role in identifying students with problems and help them to overcome. However, the article published by American’s NPR[1] warms that school facilities aren’t ready yet and there aren’t enough resources. If so, experts point out a model, “multi-tiered system of supports”, a kind of inverted pyramid where, from the intervention of all the agents, help is more specialised.

In this way, the article calls school directors for investing on socio-emotional developing, anti-bullying and suicide prevention programs.

With the goal of making mental health problems during infancy visible, the article outlines some recommendations and good practices intended for different actors: family, teachers, social workers, school directors, psychologists and special education teachers.

Family should be the first actor to identify signs of troubles on child. That’s why it is compulsory to establish a closed collaboration among tutors, teachers and parents.

In some cases, scholars spend more time with their teachers rather than with their parents. Professors can detect changes in kids’ behaviour and say so to their parents, psychologist or school’s social worker, etc. However, most of educators receive a minimal mental health education.

Social workers are a bridge between family and teachers as far as kids’ problems attention are concerned. According to the article, more social workers, special education professors and psychological support to schools will be needed in order to work with those students who are at risk of suffering from a mental health problem or those who already suffer from one.

 


[1] NPR, previously known as National Public Radio, is a prestigious media organisation with public and private resources that works as national syndicated for a 900 public radio stations’ network in the United States

Source: Anderson M, Cardoza K. Mental Health In Schools: A Hidden Crisis Affecting Millions Of Students. NPR: August 2016. Available on: http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2016/08/31/464727159/mental-health-in-schools-a-hidden-crisis-affecting-millions-of students?utm_campaign=storyshare&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_medium=social