Schools struggle to cope with rising mental health needs

In last year’s YRBS, 20% of Masconomet High School students reported ALWAYS experiencing stress and 30% reported OFTEN experiencing stress. There are now over 60 studies linking sleep deprivation to depression, anxiety, and stress.

“Massachusetts, like the rest of the country, has a shortage of child psychologists and psychiatrists, creating long waiting lists for care. The shortage is particularly severe in the spring when mental health issues among teenagers spike. Mental health experts say it may be linked to sleep deprivation and the mounting pressure students face to excel in school and get into the best colleges. … Massachusetts schools confront an alarming rise in the number of students who are hospitalized for mental health disorders. Over the last decade, many schools have seen the number of cases grow from just a few a year to upwards of several dozen, often transforming guidance offices into de facto psychiatric wards, educators say. “