Over 1,000 students in the Chattahoochee county school district released balloons this morning to let go of the stigma for mental health. Nikita Sellers was behind the idea, but says she wanted the execution to be completely student led.
“To have the students do drawings that are geared towards mental health, to have the students to talk about different things, about how they feel with mental health through drawing and paintings,” Sellers said.
Students rolled out their posters that they made in art class explaining what they would do when they are feeling sad or anxious. With the help of the Georgia Apex grant, Sellers says her team with the new horizons behavioral health program are able to meet with kids and parents on campus. There are also school based clinics at both schools.
“Two in 10 children have some sort of developmental, behavioral, or mental health disability and 60 percent of those don’t receive services; seventy-five percent of children that do receive services receive them in the school,” Cassel said.
Sellers says their school district is unique because many of their students have parents on post who are from all over the world. She says working with these students the biggest sign that there may be an issue is..
“Silence. Silence, crying, emotional, wanting to talk. We’ve taught them to be able to be able to talk more about whatever it is going on with them, to express how they feel,” Sellers said.
Sellers says her team’s goal is to be that trusted adult for all students to come to no matter how long their stay is at one of the chattahoochee county schools.Chattahoochee county schools will be holding events throughout this mental health awareness month.