The New Focus on Children's Mental Health

Across the United States, up to one in five children suffers from a mental disorder in a given year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Thisequates to more than 17 million young people who meet criteria for disorders that affect their ability to learn, behave, and express their emotions.

Giving children access to mental-health resources early in their education, however, can play a key role in mitigating negative consequences later in life, said David Anderson, the senior director of the ADHD and Behavior Disorders Center at the Child Mind Institute.

“It’s during childhood and adolescence where we have a large concentration of mental-health issues, and school is where many kids are spending a large portion of their day. That makes school the perfect place to focus mental-health resources,” Anderson said. “Waiting too long to pay attention to student mental health can easily lead to school dropouts or other problems later in life.”

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