Student Well-Being Video

Do Students Need Mental Health Supports? Or Are We Just Coddling Them?

By Peter DeWitt — September 26, 2022 5:29
Second grader Tiffinie Tillis works with dean of students Andrea Keck while visiting a sensory room at Quincy Elementary School, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021, in Topeka, Kan. The rooms are designed to relieve stresses faced by students as they return to classrooms amid the ongoing pandemic.

In this conversation with leadership coach Peter DeWitt, elementary school counselor Tommie Glover and SEL specialist Sydney Mitchell discuss what they believe COVID has taught us concerning the mental health needs of students. Glover and Mitchell explain how the pandemic revealed the prominent role that schools play in the social and emotional development of young people and what happens when that support is gone.

Peter DeWitt is a former K-5 public school principal turned author, presenter, and leadership coach.

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An 8th grader works on a class project at Paw Paw Middle School on Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, in Paw Paw, Michigan. The students were asked to write a word that was important to them and their work in the classroom. They then added the words to a poster to serve as a class "contract." The district has upped its social-emotional curriculum during the pandemic, as more students struggle. That is common nationwide. A recent AP-NORC/MTV poll found that nearly half of U.S. teens said the pandemic has made it harder to be happy and maintain their mental health.
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