U.S. Reps. Brian Fitzpatrick and Susan Wild introduced the Mental Health in Schools Excellence Program Act.
This legislation addresses the shortage of mental health professionals, like school psychologists, social workers and counselors. Specifically, authorization is granted to establish partnerships between the Department of Education and eligible graduate programs to cover up to 100 percent of attendance costs for students who complete five years of service as a school-based mental health service provider.
“Schools play a critical role in meeting the mental and behavioral health needs of children and youth, which are reaching a crisis point,” said Leslie Z. Paige, presidenof the National Association of School Psychologists. “Unfortunately, we are facing a shortage of school-employed mental health providers, which is impeding schools’ ability to meet the growing need. We applaud Reps. Fitzpatrick and Wild for their leadership in introducing legislation that will help increase the pool of professionals appropriately trained to support our children’s learning and mental health in schools.”