Mental Health Education 

in schools is paramount in tackling affective disorders among children 

Mental Health Education

in schools is paramount in tackling  affective disorder among children

School-based Mental Health education is ideal for 

removing affective disturbance stigma in Caribbean communities

SCHOOL-BASED INTERVENTION

Schools serve as the foundation of the community and the vehicle for reaching a large number of children. Research shows that exposure to trauma has the most severe effects on the child’s cognitive schema about moral authority in his or her social world. Untreated trauma profoundly influences a child’s readiness to show up in a classroom able to attend to cognitive learning. For many families, seeking “mental health” services carries the burden of stigma of possible “craziness” and a damaged identity. While families and children may have little understanding of “counseling” in the context of an educational setting, locating mental health support in the school can eliminate the problem of access.

School-based Mental Health education is ideal for 

removing affective disturbance stigma in Caribbean communities

SCHOOL-BASED INTERVENTION

Schools serve as the foundation of the community and the vehicle for reaching a large number of children. Research shows that exposure to trauma has the most severe effects on the child’s cognitive schema about moral authority in his or her social world. Untreated trauma profoundly influences a child’s readiness to show up in a classroom able to attend to cognitive learning. For many families, seeking “mental health” services carries the burden of stigma of possible “craziness” and a damaged identity. While families and children may have little understanding of “counseling” in the context of an educational setting, locating mental health support in the school can eliminate the problem of access.

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Reduce the Barriers

In spite of our ability to predict general responses to trauma depending on age and developmental level, there is still tremendous variability among students regarding post-traumatic symptoms and the extent to which learning and school behavior may be disrupted. The variety of individual responses to trauma is related to many factors, including a student’s prior history of trauma or loss, prior or current mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, or behavior problems, and individual differences in temperament.

Reduce the Barriers

In spite of our ability to predict general responses to trauma depending on age and developmental level, there is still tremendous variability among students regarding post-traumatic symptoms and the extent to which learning and school behavior may be disrupted. The variety of individual responses to trauma is related to many factors, including a student’s prior history of trauma or loss, prior or current mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, or behavior problems, and individual differences in temperament.

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HIJACKED LEARNING

A traumatic event can severely interrupt the school routine and the processes of teaching and learning. There are usually high levels of emotional upset, potential for disruptive behavior, or loss of student attendance unless efforts are made to reach out to students and staff with additional information and services. Students traumatized by exposure to violence have been shown to have lower grade point averages, more negative remarks in their cumulative records, and more reported absences from school than other students. They may have increased difficulties concentrating and learning at school and may engage in unusually reckless or aggressive behavior.

HIJACKED LEARNING

A traumatic event can severely interrupt the school routine and the processes of teaching and learning. There are usually high levels of emotional upset, potential for disruptive behavior, or loss of student attendance unless efforts are made to reach out to students and staff with additional information and services. Students traumatized by exposure to violence have been shown to have lower grade point averages, more negative remarks in their cumulative records, and more reported absences from school than other students. They may have increased difficulties concentrating and learning at school and may engage in unusually reckless or aggressive behavior.

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MISUNDERSTOOD BEHAVIORS

Children exposed to a traumatic event feel self-conscious about their emotional responses to the event. They often experience feelings of shame and guilt about the traumatic event and may express fantasies about revenge and retribution. A traumatic event for adolescents may foster a radical shift in the way they think about the world. Some of these adolescents may begin to engage in self-destructive or accident-prone behaviors, and reckless behaviors. There may be a shift in their interpersonal relationships with family members, teachers, and classmates. These students may show a change in their school performance, attendance, and behavior.

MISUNDERSTOOD BEHAVIORS

Children exposed to a traumatic event feel self-conscious about their emotional responses to the event. They often experience feelings of shame and guilt about the traumatic event and may express fantasies about revenge and retribution. A traumatic event for adolescents may foster a radical shift in the way they think about the world. Some of these adolescents may begin to engage in self-destructive or accident-prone behaviors, and reckless behaviors. There may be a shift in their interpersonal relationships with family members, teachers, and classmates. These students may show a change in their school performance, attendance, and behavior.

 

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The involvement of the school is critical in supporting students through the emotional and physical challenges they may face following an exposure to a traumatic event.

The involvement of the school is critical in supporting students through the emotional and physical challenges they may face following an exposure to a traumatic event.