Statewide drive underway to put mental health resources into every Colorado school | CraigDailyPress.com

Statewide drive underway to put mental health resources into every Colorado school

Craig Press staff report

DENVER — Children are more likely to seek help if mental health support is available at school. To that end, Mental Health Colorado has created a School Toolkit — essentially, the A,B,Cs for getting students access to mental health care.

The toolkit is a guide for schools, districts and interested parents — anyone who wants kids to get the mental health attention they deserve. This includes help with implementing mental health screenings, suicide prevention, wellness plans that could include school counselors and more.

"The first signs of mental illness typically appear during adolescence, but most people don't get the care they need until eight or 10 years later – if they ever get it at all," said Andrew Romanoff, Mental Health Colorado president and CEO, in a news release. "That's a gap we have to close. If we're serious about making Colorado a national leader in mental health care, schools are a good place to start."

Research shows that addressing mental health in schools leads to improvements in school climate, academic outcomes and student wellness.

Mental Health Colorado is the state's leading advocate for the prevention and treatment of mental health and substance use disorders. One million Coloradans deal with a mental health disorder each year.

To download the free toolkit and or learn more about it, visit mentalhealthcolorado.org/schooltoolkit.

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For more information and to schedule interviews, call Jen Marnowski, Mental Health Colorado communications director, at 720- 208-2240.