Department of Education Releases Recommendations on Supporting Students’ Mental Health
The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services released a new resource, "Supporting Child and Student Social, Emotional, Behavioral, and Mental Health Needs." Citing a rise in mental health challenges for students during the pandemic, the resource identifies seven challenges to providing school-or program-based support for students across early childhood, K-12, and higher education settings.
Each challenge is accompanied by a matching recommendation that schools are encouraged to implement, including through the use of stimulus funding. For example, to combat gaps in professional development and support, the Department recommends using federal funds to hire additional counselors, therapists, social workers, and other qualified service providers and emphasize recruiting, training, and ongoing supports to expand the workforce more broadly.
The resource also uses examples and data from across the country to demonstrate the need for such supports in schools, highlighting disproportionate need for student groups include students with disabilities, LGBTQ+ students, and English learners.