Fulltime licensed therapists and case workers to be placed in schools
Fort Frye Local Schools will see a five-fold increase of mental health, therapeutic and case worker services for its students in the coming year.
A new contract with Life and Purpose Services approved by the Board of Education Monday will result in the placement of two fulltime licensed professional therapists and three fulltime therapeutic behavior support specialists – more commonly called case workers – in schools.
The increase in resources for children and their families in need of help was made possible by a grant from the state under a special appropriation initiated by Gov. Mike DeWine in the 2019-20 state budget, Superintendent Stephanie Starcher said.
“I am so excited about this,” Starcher said. “Sometimes we’re quick to criticize the General Assembly or the governor, but this is something they got right. They listened to the public and the community, who were saying that kids have so many issues that impact their ability to learn.”
Teachers in recent years have been overwhelmed by behavioral and psychological difficulties their students exhibit, some of which are attributed to difficulties at home caused by the opioid crisis. Fort Frye last year contracted with L&P to place one full-time therapist in schools, but she was quickly booked to capacity.
“She didn’t have enough room on the schedule, and we knew we needed a second therapist,” Starcher said.
The services, which include two therapists and three case workers who will have offices in the schools, will cost the district $162,000. Students or family who are referred to ongoing therapy outside school with L&P will be billed through insurance, Medicaid or private pay.View Full Article Learn More
The level of need among the students and their families in Washington County could be measured by the number of agencies offering help to the school districts trying to respond to it.
The services, which include two therapists and three case workers who will have offices in the schools, will cost the district $162,000. Students or family who are referred to ongoing therapy outside school with L&P will be billed through insurance, Medicaid or private pay.
More than a dozen teachers and administrators from Marietta City Schools met Monday morning to hear presentations from nine locally-based groups with services ranging from financial assistance to families and help for domestic violence victims to mental health aid and substance abuse treatment, in an event titled Every Child Needs a Hero.
Jessica Dearth, shelter director for EVE, Inc., said the domestic violence nonprofit offers in-class programs and outreach assistance that can be combined with school events such as ice cream socials and family days.
“We have drug and alcohol prevention programs, Too Good for Drugs, and domestic violence programs, Too Good for Violence, curriculums for all grades,” she said. “Domestic violence is a tough subject, people are in fear that they’ll have their children taken away … everyone, especially in this area, is afraid of airing their dirty laundry, they have the attitude of what goes on at home stays at home. Call us if you need help.”
Hilles Hughes, deputy director of the Washington County Behavioral Health Board, said the number of behavioral health providers in the county has grown from one to four – Life and Purpose Services, Hopewell Health, Rigel Recovery Services and Oriana House. A fifth – Integrated Services for Behavioral Health – will soon be established as well.View Full Article Learn More