How young patients keep up with schoolwork during treatment

Posted on 03/17/21 12:34:pm

 

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According to the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI), one in six youth are living with a mental health condition, with 50% of all mental health conditions developing by the age of 14. These numbers reflect just how critical it is for children and teens to get the help they need. When young patients receive mental health or addiction care at Rogers, a key part of care focuses on teaching valuable strategies to help them keep up with school while in treatment and in the future.

Helping patients keep up with school

For children and adolescents, the stress of balancing their grades and addressing mental health challenges can be difficult. Additionally, parents may worry that seeking mental health care during the academic year could interfere with their child's ability to keep up with their classmates.

"We like to assure parents that their child is taken care of when it comes to school," explains Bridget, an education specialist at Rogers' San Francisco East Bay clinic. "Even though it is a time commitment to come to treatment, school is still a priority."

Education specialists like Bridget play a crucial role in helping young patients keep up with their work and gain skills for academic success.

"I do an education assessment right when they come in so I know how their mental health is affecting their schoolwork," explains Bridget. " I also run the education group for kids during programming for at least an hour each day so they can stay on top of their homework."

While receiving outpatient care at Rogers, children and teens learn techniques to give them more control over feelings that may interfere with their academic performance and conduct in the classroom and develop healthy coping strategies. Rogers also partners with schools to ensure that while students receive intensive mental health or addiction treatment, they can also continue their education. This may include a modified school plan or home and hospital instruction to ensure that the child does not fall behind.

Helping students thrive

Not only does Rogers help young patients continue their academics while they're in treatment, the tactics they learn are also helpful when returning to the classroom. Bridget says the prospect of returning can be nerve-wracking for both the student and their parents, but with the help what they learned at Rogers, can be a positive experience.

"I communicate with the school about what they learned here that they can use in class, so teachers can also help them when they go back," says Bridget. "That's what I love most about my job, that I can tell the schools that these are their skills and if you tell them to sit with their anxiety or use their DBT skills, they know what to do. They just need the opportunity."

Help for children and adolescents at Rogers

If your child is struggling with mental health or addiction, help is available. To schedule a free, confidential screening:

  • Call 800-767-4411 for inpatient, residential, or outpatient care in Brown Deer, Oconomowoc, or West Allis.
  • Call 888-927-2203 for all other outpatient locations.
  • Use the online form.

Call 800-767-4411 or go to rogersbh.org to request a free screening.