Mental Health & Wellness
Mental health and school safety issues are the most critical issues facing our students in today’s world, especially in times of crisis such as these. Successfully navigating these extraordinary events will require an added focus on mental health and wellness for all our community members. During my time as a Neenah school board member I have supported advances in our mental health programing including establishing one of the first K-12 Mental Health Coordinators in the state, Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) training for our staff, addressing Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) so our kids are able to be successful in school, anti-bullying curriculum expansion enhancing relationships and school safety, and by making peer-mentor suicide prevention programs like Sources-of-Strength available to our students.
Additionally, through a collaborative effort with local mental health providers, legislative support, and grants, we are able to offer therapy services to our students directly at school. Mental health and wellness is critical to the success of our community members. As a Neenah school board member and Legislative Committee Chair, I have helped draft resolutions for the Wisconsin state education convention, the Wisconsin Association of School Boards, and state legislators in support of mental health funding for our students and communities.
Moving forward as we navigate this pandemic, access to quality mental health programing will be essential to the success and recovery of our students and communities. As our district moves to digital, on-line learning, we will be able to offer mental health and wellness resources digitally. Additionally, as a Board of Directors member for the Samaritan Counseling Center, I have supported the work of creative and caring administrators there as they work to rapidly increase access to mental health services through tele-counseling applications.
In Madison, I will work to give greater access to mental health services to our community members through innovative and cost effective ways like tele-counseling and digital learning platforms, and will continue to advocate for support of mental health programs for our communities.