Support mental health funding in the school system budget
In these challenging times, we are reminded of what we share in common. All of us are deeply concerned for the health and wellbeing of our loved ones and our community. In times like these, we learned the best way for us to deal with fear and uncertainty is to lean in and take action. There is no time like the present to ensure our children have the appropriate mental health supports and services through the Howard County Public School System.
Under current budget constraints, funding for school-based mental health services is at risk – and this comes at a time when students may be facing increased challenges because of the disruptions and change in their lives triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. Mental wellness is critical to student success. Yet, too often, children and youth cannot get mental health treatment when they need it.
Take action now
Tell the Board of Education to invest in mental health services for students
Through a 30-school pilot program jointly funded by the Howard County Public School System and the Horizon Foundation, students can more easily access mental health services during the school day, including one-on-one counseling services. Hundreds of students have already received personalized help through this program.
Take action by sending a message to the Board of Education to protect mental health funding for this pilot and to make sure this program is evaluated so that we can continue to better serve the mental health needs of students.
At a time when COVID-19 has brought significant disruptions and changes to our children’s lives, it is imperative that we protect this funding in the FY2021 operating budget to ensure these services will continue. In addition to the pilot, children need a full range of school-based mental health services, especially now, whether offered in person or virtually and additional teacher training and supports may be necessary to deal with the social and emotional impacts of these trying times.
Join our sign-on letter for organizations that care about mental health
We have created a joint letter for organizations that want to take a stand and show that #MentalHealthMatters for our children and youth. If you represent an organization that believes all children should be able to thrive both in and out of the classroom, please add your organization or company to the list of signees. Please contact Jennifer White, senior community engagement officer at the Horizon Foundation, with any questions at email@example.com.