In The News...

Schools will reopen in the next few weeks across New Hampshire without newly available federal money for student services such as speech therapy, mental health counseling and nursing.

State health officials expect to double the number of children with serious behavioral problems who get “wraparound” services such as peer support, in-home counseling and respite care, after the federal government approved a change in the state’s Medicaid plan.

New Hampshire’s Department of Health and Human Services wants to improve its child welfare system by integrating mental health, substance abuse, and preventive services to better support youth and families.An assessment done for the department was released Monday.

In the wake of incidents such as the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14th, our nation – including New Hampshire – has begun to put more emphasis on ways to increase safety in schools.

A task force’s report on making New Hampshire schools safer includes a strong focus on mental health, though one advocacy group says the suggestions don’t go far enough.

School safety issues are very complex, but we must find meaningful, systemic, and effective solutions to end gun violence and improve school safety. Safe and successful schools need thriving children who feel socially, emotionally, and physically safe and supported. As leaders and professionals, we must ensure that we are supporting the healthy social and emotional development of New Hampshire’s future citizens and leaders.

It's only in recent years that New Hampshire has begun to seriously address the mental health needs of children.

To the Editor:

Earlier this February, the Senate Education Committee, in a 3-2 vote, voted to strike down Senate Bill 431, a critical bill which allows schools and organizations to collect the data necessary to provide with federal prevention grants, including those utilized for the system of children’s behavioral health care.

As reported in the Monitor last month, in 2016, the New Hampshire Legislature took a major step forward by directing our state to develop a comprehensive, coordinated system of behavioral health care for children.