Our professional development sessions are not intended to supplant any existing mental health services currently being offered by organization’s Employee Assistance Programs. We are advocates for mental healthcare and strongly encourage employees to seek counseling from a licensed mental health expert whenever needed; however, we also recognize that mental healthcare is still relatively new, especially in communities of color. The issues facing students and their families are often systemic. COVID-19 has left an overwhelming need for social-emotional supports to help educators and other professionals serving children and families effectively respond to and deal with mental health related issues.
Whole group professional development sessions remove the stigma often associated with counseling; it also allows us to address issues and problems that are happening on a larger scale and equip staff with a group-think approach and perspective from which to respond to issues they may face with their students.