New Jersey's 40th Legislative District

Senator Kristin Corrado

Senator Kristin Corrado

Senate Approves Corrado Legislation Strengthening Mental Health Assistance in Schools

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Senator Kristin Corrado’s bill enhancing the availability of mental health services for students was cleared by the New Jersey Senate.

Sen. Kristin Corrado’s bill enhancing the availability of mental health services for students was cleared by the New Jersey Senate. (Pixabay)

Corrado’s bill (S-3013) adapts references in the School Funding Reform Act of 2008 and all related statutes to reflect that a “secure school” includes provisions for the mental health and wellbeing of students.

“This bill acknowledges that mental health and school security and safety are inseparable,” said Corrado (R-40). “Research indicates that half of the young people who have been diagnosed with mental illnesses lack access to appropriate health services. Appropriate and available treatment can help these students live normal, productive lives. This legislation will make it easier to get help.”

According to a report issued last year by the New Jersey School Boards Association, young people’s access to mental health services is severely limited, and an alarming number of 10- to 24-year-olds were treated in emergency rooms for self-inflicted injuries or suicide attempts.

“Now more than ever we must ensure our schools are capable of identifying students who are in crisis and in need of mental health services,” said Corrado (R-40). “The emotional and psychological stress of the COVID pandemic effected the lives of New Jersey residents of all ages, but school-age children are especially at risk. Many students who were quarantined away from friends and blocked from school and social activities may still be feeling isolated and depressed.”

Corrado’s bill changes all references of security aid to health and safety aid in the School Funding Reform Act and amends the Secure Schools for All Children Act to provide that the aid allocated for security services to non-public schools may also be used for mental health services.

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