A silent epidemic is upon us.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to one in five kids living in the U.S. shows signs or symptoms of mental health disorder. If that isn’t hard enough to swallow, in Eagle County, the numbers are shocking.
The Healthy Kids Colorado Survey, facilitated locally by Mountain Youth every other year since 2011, shows that Eagle County student mental health issues are rising and predicted to get worse due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
EFEC is committed to identifying and backing a new, more equitable approach to social-emotional learning support for students in schools. We seek to ensure that every Eagle County School is staffed with a behavioral counselor, and that each professional has the resources they need to be effective.
“In U.S. public schools today, it’s estimated there is one school psychologist for every 1,381 students. The National Association of School Psychologists recommends one psychologist for every 500 to 700 students.”
We recognize this is not adequate for our students or teachers. To fill this gap until sustainable funding is attainable, EFEC has received two consecutive collaborative grants from The Colorado Health Foundation spanning 2019 through 2023 in the amount of $567,920 to promote equitable access to vital Behavioral Education (B.E.) programs for social-emotional learning delivered by four local agencies working within our schools. This coalition of B.E. Partners includes Bright Future Foundation, Mountain Youth, Red Ribbon Project, and SpeakUp ReachOut.
We will continue working closely with the District and collaboratively with mental and behavioral health organizations to secure sustainable, long term funding that will support B.E. services our students’ need.