EDUCATION

Survey: More Than 100,000 Utah Students Need Mental Health Services

Feb 4, 2019, 6:58 PM | Updated: 8:33 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A survey sent to Utah’s school districts has estimated that over 100,000 students are in need of mental health services.

The survey was conducted on behalf of the Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee of the Utah State Legislature.

Results were presented to the subcommittee Monday.

The survey indicated district leaders across the state felt there was not enough mental health help available in schools.

Almost one out of five students need mental health help, the survey claimed, but of those, fewer than 20 percent were getting it.

School officials said there were not enough resources to meet the huge demand.

“Mental health and safety concerns are our top priority,” said Brad Christensen, director of the Student and Family Resources department of the Davis School District. “It’s a critical discussion. It has to happen. Our state has an increased need in mental health prevention as it relates to safety.”

One respondent said one reason parents didn’t seek help for their children was the cost of professional help.

“Many of our students with the greatest mental health needs, who are a danger to themselves and others, do not have access to funding to get the medical services they need,” they said.

Another commenter said they have already seen tragic consequences in their district.

“We have seen a significant increase in mental health issues with our students including three student suicides in the last six months,” they said.

Lawmakers also heard from mental health professionals. Christensen said David County initiated a “mindfulness program,” that was working for students. The program has been instituted in more than 60 schools so far.

(Photo by Christopher Lee/Getty Images)

“It teaches kids and teachers how to deal with their stress,” said Kristen Reisig, clinical director at Davis Behavioral Health. “It teaches how to be on point with how you want to focus your attention, so that you’re not thinking about what happened with mom and dad before you left, or what happened in your own home. You can bring your attention to where it needs to be, while you’re at school.”

Also discussed was better face-to-face access between student access to mental health professional through video.

“I think you have to think outside the box, particularly as you look at funding and in manpower in providing those resources,” said Christensen. “I think telehealth is a great place to start.”

 

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Education

...
Ayanna Likens

Three healthy back-to-school lunches using the same ingredients

Chef Christopher Delissio with Intermountain shares three healthy lunches to put in your kid’s school lunch box, all using the same ingredients.
2 days ago
Follow @KSL_AlexCabrero...
Alex Cabrero

Utah mechanic excites students about mechanics by preparing them for demolition derby

A man has been teaching mechanics at multiple high schools, the payoff of the class? They get to have their own demolition derby in the cars they've fixed.
3 days ago
(KSL TV)...
Andrew Adams

Tooele County School District administrators roll out contingency plans for new elementary in Grantsville

School district administrators briefed parents Thursday on possible contingency plans as they raced against the clock to open a new elementary in time for the beginning of the school year.
3 days ago
(Derek Petersen/KSL TV)...
Casey Scott, KSL TV

NOW HIRING: Salt Lake City school bus drivers

Summer is winding down and schools are ready to welcome back their students -- but they'll need a way to get there first.
3 days ago
(Erin Cox/KSL TV)...
Erin Cox

USU partners with Taiwanese program for new summer Chinese immersion

A new exchange has brought Chinese culture and language to the Beehive State.
4 days ago
...
Lauren Steinbrecher

Voters will decide whether Orem creates its own school district

A huge decision in Orem Tuesday night as the City Council voted to let residents decide if they want to create a new school district and break away from Alpine School District.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
...
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...
AARP Utah

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Survey: More Than 100,000 Utah Students Need Mental Health Services