VISD board to talk about mental health care in schools

Carolina Astrain By Carolina Astrain

Nov. 14, 2012 at 5:14 a.m.

An integrated role between the Victoria school district and a regional mental health center will be one topic for discussion at the next board of trustees meeting Thursday.

The proposed smelting between the two entities, would come at no cost to the district, aside from office space and computer access.

If the agenda item is passed, a qualified mental health professional and a licensed professional counselor would pilot the program at Patti Welder Magnet Middle School and Torres Elementary School.

The two campuses were because of expressed need from administrators and students currently receiving services at the center.

Expansion to other campuses in the district is a goal included in the agenda item's proposal.

Bringing professionals to the students will enable the district to minimize time spent off-campus, said VISD spokeswoman Diane Boyett.

If approved, the immersion would start as soon as Nov. 30, the proposed effective date.

A representative from the Gulf Bend Center will be at the meeting.

The proposed memorandum of understanding states the center and district would work together, "... to reduce stigma and resistance to seeking and accessing mental health care."

"If somebody is actually there, kids will be able to start talking to them," Boyett said. "It's to get people the help they need, without leaving the campus."



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