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Monday, June 24, 2024

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America's 'Radical Elders' continue their work for fairness, justice; SCOTUS upholds law disarming domestic abusers; Workplace adoption benefits help families, communities; Report examines barriers to successful post-prison re-entry in NC.

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A congresswoman celebrates Biden protections for mixed status families, Louisiana's Ten Commandments law faces an inevitable legal challenge, and a senator moves to repeal the strict 19th century anti-obscenity and anti-abortion Comstock Act.

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A Minnesota town claims the oldest rural Pride Festival while rural educators say they need support to teach kids social issues, rural businesses can suffer when dollar stores come to town and prairie states like South Dakota are getting help to protect grasslands.

New Survey Spotlights Parents’ Mindsets in 2022-2023 School Year

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Tuesday, April 4, 2023   

More than half of parents in Colorado and across the nation continue to be concerned about children's mental health, according to the latest survey conducted by the National Parent Teacher Association.

Staci Ruddy, president of the Colorado PTA, said many schools in the state are connecting family members, teachers and other school staff with Mental Health First Aid training, and added schools have recognized when kids want to open up, it is not always with a teacher or a parent.

"It could be their favorite bus driver, or their favorite custodian, or their favorite person that works in their cafeteria. And so providing these trainings broadly to lots of different people who are involved in the lives of the kids is really important," Ruddy said.

Nearly nine in ten parents support schools providing emotional and mental-health support, including in-school counselors or psychologists, and referrals to external providers. But just 37% said they knew how to find help at their kid's school. The survey also found that parents strongly support schools teaching content on race by the fifth grade.

The poll saw a spike in the number of parents concerned about violence at school, including bullying. Hispanic parents are significantly more worried than Black and white parents. Ruddy said 75% of parents believe schools are an important place for kids to learn and practice their social and emotional ABCs - cooperation, empathy, perseverance and respect.

"We see these skills as helping decrease bullying and violence. And like anything else that we learn, when it's reinforced both at school and at home, it's more likely to become ingrained in that child and in their behavior," she said.

Ruddy added surveys such as this are an important way to put a spotlight on parents' concerns, highlight what schools are getting right, and they also offer tools for parents and schools to work together to help all kids thrive.

"Parents need to know they have a right to be involved in what happens within the school, and they should be engaged," she said. "And schools need to know that when they engage the families, the outcome is much better, and years and years of research has shown that."


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