School Board Designates May as Mental Health Awareness Month

LOS ANGELES (May 9, 2017) - Recognizing that a student’s progress toward graduation may be impeded by mental, emotional or behavioral barriers, the Board of Education unanimously approved a resolution today designating May as Mental Health Awareness Month.

“We have brilliant minds in our classrooms and our communities,” said School Board Member Mónica García, the sponsor. “The path to 100 percent graduation in Los Angeles includes healthy minds and positive productive relationships.”

The board resolution seeks to make students and families aware of the District’s programs and activities that promote mental wellness.

Research shows that receiving mental health services can help increase attendance, improve academic performance, reduce disruptive behavior and create a more positive school climate.

Erika Torres, executive director of Student Health and Human Services for L.A. Unified said, “As a school district, it is important to educate our students, staff and communities about mental health, including factors that increase the risk of developing or exacerbating mental illnesses. We must also be equipped to provide prevention and intervention services to support our students’ success and well-being.”

Through its Office of School Mental Health, L.A. Unified supports the well-being and academic success of its students by providing high-quality services at clinics and centers located throughout the District. Mental health professionals work with students to establish positive connections, deal with problems or crises and build resiliency to overcome challenges.

“Holistic well-being sets the foundation for students and their families to reach their highest potential,” said Board Member Dr. Ref Rodriguez, a co-sponsor. “I am proud to sponsor this resolution that helps shine a light on mental health issues and supports all aspects of student and family well-being.”

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Contact: Shannon Haber (213) 241-6766

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