Today, students themselves admit that mental illness and disorders are a major problem. 70 percent believe it’s major, while the other 24 percent believe that it’s a minor problem. Things like anxiety, depression, ADHD and more go very overlooked and unnoticed. While this generation seems more open about experiences and the idea of getting help, most times it is unavailable for a multitude of reasons. That’s where school can come in, though it doesn’t seem many take the resources.
From talking to students, it was apparent that not all stress from school comes from work or peers. Some came out to say that certain questions and topics raised in the classroom were inappropriate or just not needed. Though uncomfortable topics may be necessary to be brought up in a class, the accounts we received didn’t fall under that category. While there is a consultant for teacher matters, very few felt comfortable enough to go to them.
On the topic of counselors, the school does provide many options for help depending on your needs. Student success, teacher consultant, advisors and many more are open to students. (This is the link for the Counseling Corner on the school website) But when it comes to actually seeing them, not many actually do. Some students have explained that it’s just a comfortability thing, where they don’t feel the need to go to a counselor or a teacher. Others explained their concern that if their parents were to be told or get involved. Then a handful also explained that they could take care of their issues on their own.
While these concerns are valid in all respects, it could potentially lead to other problems. Whether that be not being comfortable around certain teachers, being stressed the rest of the day, avoiding coming to school or just simply not doing homework. All of these could lead to dropping grades and unhealthy habits. A great way to get away from this outcome is learning how to cope.
It is encouraged to see a doctor or a professional if you believe there is a problem. But earlier stated, not all have that option. Some ways to get students the resources they may need is having a list of community resources. Whether that be therapy, psychiatrist or community therapy. It may give students more options to think about and consider. Another thing to improve on is availability. While there is a global pandemic going on, it definitely puts a wrench in getting something worked out. But it’s not completely off the table for future improvements. Alpena High School has many resources that students have at their fingertips to help them succeed. They really do make student life just a little easier, but there will always be room for improvement.