Principal of Washington Junior High Curt Mayer spoke at the legislative briefing about mental health funding for schools. He says part of the issue is the lack of a local communication system. They used to be able to call the local DHS office to report child abuse, but now they have to call a 1-800 number in Des Moines and speak with someone who doesn’t know the area or the people of Washington County. He also says that there aren’t enough resources for students dealing with mental health problems.
He says when a student is sent for mental health care, they are returned just a few days later due to lack of space. He says more funding would allow them to provide counselors for their students, and other organizations need funding, not just schools, to improve the mental health care of children and students.
He tells us it’s not just a local issue, schools all over the state are facing the same problem. Senator Greiner and Representative Klein agreed that it was an important issue and hope to discuss it with their fellow lawmakers in the future.