SCPS Named Federal Grant Recipient

SCPS Named Federal Grant Recipient
Posted on 02/17/2023

Seminole County Public Schools Named a Recipient of Federal Grant to Support Mental Health and Student Wellness

For Immediate Release

Media Contact: Katherine Crnkovich APR, CPRC

[email protected]

Sanford, FL: The U.S. Department of Education announced awards of more than $188 million in more than thirty states to increase access to school-based mental health services and to strengthen the pipeline of mental health professionals in high-needs districts. These grants will enable communities to hire approximately 5,400 school-based mental health professionals and train an estimated 5,500 more to build a diverse pipeline of mental health providers in schools. These investments will begin the important work of broadening access to critical mental health supports by increasing the number of health care providers in schools.

“Even before the disruption, isolation, and trauma of the pandemic, youth rates of anxiety and depression, and other mental health challenges were on the rise, and too many students suffered in silence,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “Mental health and wellness have profound implications for our students, their academic success, and their overall outcomes, and we know that youth facing mental health challenges are more likely to receive services in a school-based setting.”

Seminole County Public Schools (SCPS) will use the federal funds to add six additional school social workers at our school sites. The additional allocations will allow for full-time support at both high schools and middle schools, as well as increased support at the elementary level. “I am excited that this project will allow our district to enhance direct services to students in our schools. We will continue to pursue multiple avenues of support, including grant funding and community partnerships, to scale up resources that meet the evolving needs of all students,” said Serita Beamon, Superintendent.

The School Board of Seminole County has adopted a five-year Strategic Plan which includes Conditions for Learning as an initiative to support student achievement. A priority within the initiative addresses student wellness, which encompasses students' emotional and mental health and well-being. “SCPS is excited to continue this important work, ensuring students have access to the resources needed to help them graduate from high school prepared for the future as a lifelong learner and responsible citizen,” said Amy Elwood, Assistant Superintendent for Student Support Services.

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