Mental health at FHS, part 1: Available resources

Bethany Bergschneider, Editor

Michael Phelps, Prince Harry, Demi Lovato, Kendrick Lamar, Lady Gaga—this may seem like a random, unorganized list of famous people. You may be surprised to learn that all of them share one thing: they’ve recently become advocates for, or publicly opened up about, mental health.

As awareness about mental health increases, it has recently become a much more relevant issue. This trend is also applying to education. Mr. Tabeek, our school counselor, feels that the need has increased. “I don’t think that there’s more taking advantage [of our mental health resources], but there’s more that need to be taking advantage. I feel like [with] the world we live in, there’s increased issues, there’s family issues, there’s peer issues, there’s lots of pressures, so I believe more students need assistance, but I wouldn’t say they are necessarily going out and seeking it or accepting it.”

At Franklin, we have two main staff members who are available for mental health concerns: Mr. Tabeek and Ms. Griffith, our school social worker. However, in extreme situations, other resources can be provided. “If there’s ever a situation where a student is suicidal or wanting to hurt themselves, then an outside worker comes into the school, talks with the student, and connects them with resources,” says Ms. Griffith.

Although we do have faculty at Franklin who specifically deal with mental health issues, they aren’t the only ones who can offer assistance to students. “There’s two trained professionals, but in reality, in my opinion, anybody that has a connection with the student, it depends on the level [of help] that the student needs, but in general terms, a teacher, a cook, a custodian, can make that contact with the student… and that might be the only connection they need, to know that somebody cares and somebody’s listening,” says Mr. Tabeek. “All they have to do is come say, ‘Can we talk?’ My door is always open.”

Works Cited

Yang, Lucy. “23 Celebrities Who Have Opened up about Their Struggles with Mental Illness.” INSIDER,  27 Dec. 2017, Accessed 9 November 2018.