Today, Progressive Conservative MLA and Education Critic, Tim Halman, will introduce legislation that will give students in-class mental health resources.
The proposed mental health and wellness kits will include items that can aid students experiencing some form of mental distress. Mental health professionals employed by an education entity will have input on appropriate materials going into the kits.
The mental health and wellness kits are meant to be used in situations that have not yet reached crisis level. They are a resource for teachers to assist students experiencing mental health issues at that moment.
“We are seeing the rate of mental health issues among young people continue to increase, and teachers continue to find it challenging when assisting students in these situations,” says Halman. “These mental health and wellness kits will be crucial tools for teachers to better handle these situations. The Liberals should agree to support measures such as this that will help students.”
Frances Abbass, a teacher who strongly supports the kits says “The kits free the teacher from constantly bringing children back to task. They self regulate their behaviour through the use of these tools and toys.”
Halman says the PC Caucus is proud to be committed to mental health supports in classrooms and mental health services across the province.
“The kits provide teachers with another way to focus on teaching and students without having to worry about student anxiety being a distraction,” says John Stewart, a Nova Scotia teacher.
The mental wellness kits will include items such as stress balls and fidget spinners, contact information for mental health services, small heating and cooling packs, and other items that can help aid someone experience a panic attack or another mental health issue that has not yet escalated.
“Materials like these kits can help break down the stigma on mental health disorders. I urge the government to pass this common-sense bill,” adds John Lohr, PC Critic for Addictions and Mental Health Services.