Friday, February 16, 2018

Troubled Students

MAGA is a narrow path that elevates a few rich men, their families, and cronies--few others. I say we can Make America Great for All!

As I continue to think about Parkland, I realize that we need to deepen our approach to troubled students and families. What more can we do?

First, I think that we can better coordinate health care and schools. I believe that every school should be associated with a full service health center, and that all children under the age of 18 should be completely covered by the government for their health care. In situations like this, students would have ready access to high quality health care during the school day when needed. This would include mental health care and counseling as well. Bringing together health and education to better serve students will help us better serve the child who is troubled. Troubled children are troubled for a large variety of reasons, and typically it takes both health care workers and school staff to tease out what's happening when a child is troubled--together with greater synthesis we can lay out better plans for those students.

Next, we need to prioritize student needs. If a child truly needs lots of social emotional learning and care at school, perhaps they have a more modified academic plan or an integrated social emotional/academic subject(s) class that helps to give them what they need. Children who experience trauma, loss, major health events, and other devastating experiences need more and need different. If we can help those children early on, we save them and society problems. We have to make it okay for families to seek help when their children are outliers and are not served well by the mainstream. We need to use modern medicine and new research to evaluate children who are troubled with greater detail and understanding. Often what lies at a child's problem spot is something we may not have considered or even something we may not fully understand.

After that, society needs to better fund family and youth services including health care and education. That is an investment in safe and dynamic communities. The countries of the world that have the best quality of living do this and we can do this too.

Parkland is a GIANT wake-up call to Americans. We have been letting a few insensitive people make decisions for all of our people. We have been standing by while important regulations, supports, funding, and quality programs have been stripped from our culture to mainly pad the pockets of a few rich families--this is not a good investment for anyone. It's time to stand up in honor of the many innocent children and others who have lost their lives per our neglect to make America Great for All, not some, but all.