The education department promotes student mental health and well-being


Honolulu (KHON2) – The Hawaii State Department of Education is focused on student well-being and providing a safe and supportive environment after COVID.

“Whether students are physically on campus or taking classes online, we want to make sure students feel supported and cared for,” says Ayada Bonilla, School Behavioral Health Education Specialist. . “Building trusting relationships, providing social and emotional learning and understanding how trauma can impact not only our students, but also their families and adults in our schools are some of the vocational training topics offered at the staff.

The Hawaiian Tiered Support System (HMTSS) provides a systematic process for identifying students who may be struggling in the areas of academic, social, emotional, behavioral, or physical health. In addition to this process, the Department will provide ongoing professional development in mental health, resources for students, families and faculty, and a statewide media campaign that will raise awareness of the supports and programs. of well-being available on our campuses.

This year’s theme for children’s mental health awareness is Mental Health Talk. Bonilla adds, “We want to encourage an open dialogue about mental health. We will actively participate in conversations to let our students know that their well-being matters, that they matter. Schools in the department are filled with caring adults, all focused on promoting student well-being. If mental health issues arise, we have an amazing network of school behavioral health counselors and staff to offer help. No student should feel the need to struggle alone.

To connect to Hawaii State Department of Education school supports and services, contact your child’s school or call the Hawai’i Keiki Health Hotline at (844) 436-3888.

For community resources and information on treating mental health disorders, the Department of Health‘s Help Your Keiki website is a great resource for parents. The Hawai’i CARES Coordination Center offers 24/7 support with substance use, mental health and crisis intervention. The Crisis Text Line is available for those who feel more comfortable texting. In case of emergency or if you are concerned about being in danger, please call 911.


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