School-based health centers help students academically and emotionally

A 14-year-old boy who excels in sports suddenly loses interest and withdraws into class. A 10-year-old girl who excelled in math and science suddenly begins to fail tests. A teacher asks why: “It’s nothing,” they say, and yet the problems persist. Because we are living through a one-generation crisis. The kids are not okay.

Maybe these kids had anxiety or depression before COVID-19 hit us, and it’s gotten worse. Perhaps school closures, insecurity and fear during the pandemic have created new health problems. As a healthcare leader and mother, people often ask me, How can I help my children? I tell them Michigan has an invaluable resource for just this kind of support: school health centers. But Michigan is nowhere near enough.

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