Sophomores begin EHD mental health tranining


Francesca Messerschmidt

Jason Robershaw presents information about helping friends with mental health to the sophomores.

Francesca Messerschmidt, Staff Writer

Amid rising mental health concerns, HHS has partnered up with Egyptian Health Department to offer classes on mental health training to the sophomores.

During the classes, which take place during advisory, Jason Robershaw with EHD teaches different strategies to keeping good mental health, helping your friends, and learning to become more aware of the concerns of mental health.

“Teen Mental Health First Aid helps students by letting them know that mental health challenges are common and that there are resources to help,” Jason Robershaw said. Robershaw is the Clinical Director for Project Connect 3.0.

According to national studies, there has been a 25% increase in depression symptoms and a 20% increase in anxiety symptoms among teenagers. This has led to the addition of mental health first aid classes for the sophomore classes.

“It is a partnership between Egyptian Mental Health and the school district,” principal Scott Dewar said. “They approached the school.”

Dewar said that the choice was made to administer the program to the sophomores. 

Counselor Terri Pate feels that the program can be advantageous for students. 

“If students pay attention, and really want to learn about mental health, it can teach them,” Pate said.  

The sophomore class also has many opinions on the classes and if they are truly helping out students, and what they have to offer.

“If you’ve never experienced a mental health issue then yes.” Said sophomore Jayda Dunstan.

Other students believe that the execution of the classes could be improved upon.

Sophomore Reagan Brasher said. “I think they’re important, but having them so early in the morning can be draining,” sophomore Reagan Brasher said.

Students have also given feedback on what they think could be improved in the classes, to potentially make them more engaging.

“Have the mental health classes engage with the students more, and do more activities instead of just sitting down (would help),” said sophomore Zoey Brand.

Though not everyone is sure about these classes, they do have a place, and an ability to help teach students to be able to help their friends out according to Robershaw.

“Many students can hide their problems from adults in their lives, but friends usually know more,” said Robershaw. “The school is providing students the knowledge and skills to spot a mental health challenge, approach their friend, and find appropriate help.”

These classes   help teach students how to keep good mental health and how to be aware of their own problems along with others.
“Everybody has mental health, good or bad,” said Pate. “It’s ok to ask for help, and there’s always somebody here if you need it.”