These check-ins also allow educators to adapt their classes in real time. If an entire class is experiencing negative feelings, it’s a good opportunity for the teacher to stop and discuss the causes and potential solutions before moving on with planned curriculum.
Virtual Meetings Help Counselors Reach and Support Students
K–12 mental health professionals are also able to use technology in their work with students to improve communication and expand their reach. While many counselors, social workers and school psychologists still prefer to offer services face to face, the pandemic often made virtual meetings a necessity. Additionally, in rural school districts, virtual options allow mental health professionals in schools to reach more students quickly.
This is crucial as schools continue to face staffing and funding challenges. The National Center for Education Statistics survey also found that only 12 percent of schools strongly agreed that their school is able to “effectively provide mental health services to all students in need,” The Washington Post reported.
DISCOVER: Consider these technology resources for social-emotional learning.
Coming out of the pandemic, these virtual meetings have also helped prepare classes and the community to welcome back students who have been out of school due to trauma, health concerns or the loss of a parent or loved one. Virtual connections have helped counselors and social workers do whole group instruction in these instances.
Before a student returns to class, mental health professionals can meet with the family and determine their wishes and how to effectively share those, whether the student wants to share or have the teacher share with the class. The counselors can also work with the teachers to reintroduce the student to a safe place.
Such considerations allow schools to provide care and love to students who may be going through difficult times.
Vet Mental Health Technologies to Find the Best Fit for Your School
The market is teeming with companies eager to provide mental health services to schools for a price. The best companies — and the ones that will survive the longest — aren’t in it to monetize mental health services. Find companies that are providing services because they care about the well-being of students.
Carefully assess which companies will be able to take their proposed solutions and scale them to accommodate 10,000 students and staff. Many won’t be able to provide the services they offer at scale.
One of the best ways to vet companies for genuine intentions and scalable solutions is to do your own research, rather than waiting for the company to come to you. Find organizations and partners through reputable relationships and do research on companies before buying into their products. CDW partners with many companies that offer mental health technologies, and its experts can help you determine which solutions are right for your staff and students.
This article is part of the “ConnectIT: Bridging the Gap Between Education and Technology” series.