You don’t have to look far to find an article detailing the state of student achievement these days. Math and reading scores are down from where they were pre-pandemic and educators and parents alike are scrambling to find ways to close the gap. Unfortunately, academic scores aren’t the only concern in need of attention; an extraordinary percentage of our students are facing mental health challenges — many of them dire.
School psychologists are well aware of the toll social media can take on students’ mental health. Yet educators often wonder how much to get involved with issues that might seem like “parenting,” and certainly social media use could fall under that umbrella. The good news is that our input is likely to be appreciated, as confirmed by a recent study from The Pew Research Center, in which nearly half of parent respondents said they’ve looked to teachers for advice on managing screen time.
Everyone gets the back-to-school jitters — even educators. There’s a reason the “Sunday Scaries” is a thing, whether you’re returning from a long vacation or a typical weekend. And of course, this apprehension is not reserved for you and your colleagues. Students and their families likely also feel angst during transitions back to school and work.
Efficient diagnostic tools can better address mental health in patients — and providers. Today, about one in four adults experiences a diagnosable mental health disorder in a given year. Many of these adults are your patients. And many others are your healthcare staff. This leaves healthcare organizations in the position of supporting patients who may struggle to get the care they need and supporting staff who may struggle to deliver proper care.
When used responsibly, social media can provide a means for social connectedness, support, information, and entertainment for teens, all of which can be beneficial to their mental health and well-being. However, social media can also expose teens to anxiety, depression, body image issues, cyberbullying, peer pressure, racism, prejudice, sleep disorders, and addiction. These effects may be related to the amount and type of social media use, as well as the developmental stage of each teen.
Why is a good evaluation the key to solving any problem? We have a true story to share with you that can shed a little light on the importance of a thorough evaluation. It is from the perspective of a mom whose son was having difficulties paying attention, controlling his impulses, and keeping himself organized — both at home and at school. As with any good story, this one has a happy ending thanks to a dedicated team of educational and mental health professionals who left no stone unturned and worked in close collaboration with both the student and his parents.
“Rare Genetic/Monogenic Disorders & Co-Occurring Conditions in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities”
Each year, Gatlinburg brings together numerous behavioral scientists from around the world to discuss their research and collaborations in related fields such as intellectual and developmental disabilities. While it is a smaller conference, the attendees represent all professional levels and include students, post-docs, support and research staff, professors, and researchers. Our Pharma Services team also attended, excited to learn about the important and ground-breaking research being conducted in the IDD sphere.