Friday, January 27, 2023

Play

A critical number of rural IA nursing homes close; TX lawmakers consider measures to restrict, and expand voting in 2023 Session; and CT groups, and unions call for public-health reforms.

Play

Attorney General announces enforcement actions on ransomware, Democrats discuss border policies, and the FDA is relaxing rules for gay and bisexual men to donate blood.

Play

"Brain Gain?" Research shows rural population is actually growing, especially in recreational areas; other small towns are having success offering relocation incentives like free building lots, cash, complimentary dinners and even internet credits; and researchers say the key is flexibility and creativity.

Not Enough School Counselors to Meet Needs of MA Students

Play

Thursday, October 13, 2022   

In Massachusetts schools, the counselor-to-student ratio is critically high, with one counselor for every 364 students.

Some 70% of public schools nationwide have reported an increase in numbers of students seeking mental-health services at school since the start of the pandemic.

School counselors say they do it all - from helping kids cope with depression or anxiety, to academic and career counseling. But academics come second when a child faces emotional issues.

Tama Lang is a counselor at at Litwin Elementary in Chicopee, who said she struggles to help all 350 students in her building.

"Sometimes I wish I could clone myself," said Lang, "because if there was another one of me, I could get so much more done and meet the needs of students better."

Some districts are offering sign-on bonuses to recruit more school counselors, but say not enough people are entering the masters-degree programs required to work in schools - and federal funding received during the pandemic will soon be gone.

Backers of Massachusetts' Fair Share Amendment, on the November ballot, say it would direct new tax revenue from million-dollar incomes to public schools - and potentially help ease the caseloads of school counselors.

Bob Bardwell - executive director of the Massachusetts School Counselors Association - said more school counselors of color are also needed, to serve a diverse student body that's been disproportionately affected during the pandemic.

One in 360 children nationwide lost a parent or caregiver in the past two years. Bardwell said schools also deal with the lingering stigma around mental health.

"We know that there's limited options sometimes within the community to receive mental-health services," said Bardwell. "So it might be the only person that a child or a student has to seek out for mental-health support is the counselor."

While efforts are being made to increase funding as well as increase the number of college graduates seeking counseling careers, Bardwell said too many kids are hurting now.




get more stories like this via email
New data show in California, 2021-22 state testing scores are even lower than the state's historically low testing scores. (Rawpixel/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Many of California's 13.5 million children and teens have not bounced back after the pandemic, especially children of color, according to the just-…


Social Issues

Americans continue to report low trust in mainstream media, with many younger than 30 saying they trust information from social media nearly as much …

Social Issues

A Minnesota House committee heard testimony Thursday about the governor's proposed spending plan for education. As these talks unfold, public polling …


From February 2020 to November 2021, the number of workers in nursing homes and other care facilities dropped by 410,000 nationally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

Health-care professionals say low pay and a worker shortage have led a dramatic number of nursing homes in rural Iowa to close their doors. They hope …

Health and Wellness

Health-care professionals and advocates in Connecticut have said it will take sweeping reforms to bolster the state's flailing public health system…

In a national survey, Michigan was ranked 27th among the 50 states for its cost, access and quality of long-term care supports and services. California was ranked first. (Flickr)

Social Issues

In her fifth State of the State address this week, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer emphasized policies designed to put more money in Michiganders' pockets…

Social Issues

By nearly every measure, voter fraud in U.S. elections is rare, but that isn't stopping the Texas Legislature from considering dozens of bills this …

Social Issues

A Republican-sponsored bill in the Arkansas Legislature would make it illegal to circulate petitions at or near polling places during elections…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021