Integrating Mental Health Education in Therapeutic School Curriculum

As 50 percent of people with mental health struggles show signs by age 14, many schools are recognizing the need for intervention within the school system. Most traditional schools do not have the resources to provide comprehensive support for children struggling with mental health issues in large classrooms. Therapeutic schools integrate mental health education into their curriculum to help students feel supported inside and out of the classroom.

Why Do Students Need Mental Health Education?

While public schools have counselors available to provide one-on-one support, counselors often have large caseloads which can make it difficult for students to access these services. Many young people lack the emotional vocabulary necessary to realize that they may benefit from talking to a counselor. When they suffer in silence, their problems feel even more overwhelming.

Mental health issues can affect students’ motivation, ability to concentrate, and attendance, which can lead to poor academic performance. Understanding how these issues overlap helps teachers support students in reaching their academic potential.

Offering mental health education through classroom outreach makes the information available to every student, not just students who have been identified as at-risk. It can inspire students to reach out for help or teach students how to support their peers and create a more positive school climate.

Goals of Mental Health Education

Some school systems are beginning to require 5 hours of mental health education annually to give students an overview of mental health issues and resources. Therapeutic schools for students who are struggling emotionally, socially, and academically offer the same amount of mental health education through group therapy weekly, in addition to individual therapy, family therapy, and learning support.
Mental health education aims to help students:

  • Become more aware of signs and symptoms of mental health struggles
  • Understand how to reach out for help
  • Learn what to do or say to help peers struggling with mental health issues

Elements of Therapeutic School Curriculum

  • Small class sizes.  With an average of eight students per classroom, we help your child receive instruction that is tailored to their unique learning needs as well as the individual attention they require to thrive academically. We help to remove many of the stresses of traditional school environments by removing distractions and encouraging the sense of community our students share.
  • Teachers collaborate with Clinical Team. Our teachers work closely with students’ therapists to better understand students’ needs and how their emotional or behavioral issues may impact their learning experience.
  • Incorporating mindfulness into the classroom. Teachers offer mindfulness practices, like deep breathing, to help students maintain focus in the classroom and ground themselves when they feel overwhelmed.
  • Academic electives offered in therapeutic schools take a therapeutic approach to recreational activities, including music, art, health, and equine therapy.
  • Group therapy focuses on rotating topics and gives a space for girls to discuss specific issues they’ve been struggling with. Group therapy involves an educational component that teaches girls how to cope with these issues.

Asheville Academy Can Help

Asheville Academy is a therapeutic boarding school for girls ages 10-14 who struggle with learning, behavioral, and emotional issues. Our accredited academic program is focused on teaching middle school girls social skills, study skills, and healthier coping skills in order to empower girls to move forward and transition smoothly back into their home and school life. Students gain a greater sense of confidence, ability to manage emotions, and the skills to communicate effectively. We can help your family today!

If your daughter’s mental health issues are affecting her academic performance, contact us at 800-264-8709 for more information about therapeutic boarding schools.