October 10th is World Mental Health Day. The York Catholic District School Board recognizes the importance of increasing awareness of the early signs of child and youth mental health problems; decreasing stigma; and understanding that help is available. We are strongly committed to promoting Mental Well-Being in all our students.
The statistics are alarming. One in five Ontario children and youth has a mental health problem - that's about 500,000 kids. Because of the strong link between mental health and student achievement some of these students will not achieve their full academic potential. In addition, 80 per cent of students will not receive appropriate treatment because of various barriers, including stigma.
In 2013, the Board began the implementation of its comprehensive Mental Health and Addiction Strategy with a focus on:
In April 2015, the Board launched a Mental Health Slogan Contest. We asked York Catholic secondary students to tell us what positive mental health means to them. Congratulations to Amin Mohsen, a student at Jean Vanier CHS, who won the board-wide Mental Health Slogan Contest. Amin's slogan is a positive one, which focuses on the outcome for those suffering with Mental Health concerns. His slogan "A Healthy Mind Means a Healthy Life" is featured on the Board's first Mental Health Poster.
This school year we will invite our students in the elementary and secondary panel to participate in Mental Health Video Contest. Details of the contest will be shared in the new year.
Various events are being organized throughout the Board to promote Mental Health and Well-Being this year among YCDSB staff, parents and students. Some of these include:
Catholic Education Centre, November 12, 2015
Catholic Education Centre, April 4, 2016
Following the success of the 1st Student Mental Health Symposium on March 30, 2015, our secondary students (grades nine to twelve) from across the YCDSB will participate in the Board’s 2nd Annual Student Mental Health Symposium, “BE EMPOWERED,” intended to raise awareness of mental health concerns and provide students with knowledge that they can take back to their own school communities to share with their peers. The Symposium will feature a keynote speaker, Dr. Joel Goldberg, and a number of workshops led by YCDSB staff, various community partners and others.
Catholic Education Centre, April 1, 2016
Elementary students (grades seven and eight) from across the YCDSB will participate in the Board’s 1st Annual Elementary Student Mental Health Symposium also entitled “BE EMPOWERED,” intended to raise awareness of mental health issues and provide our intermediate students with knowledge that they can take back to their own school communities to share with their peers.
For more information about the York Catholic District School Board’s Mental Health initiatives and for helpful resources and tips, visit the Mental Health section of the website.