Southfield (CW50) – School Counselors have always been an integral part to a school’s goal to ensure that the students attending the school are safe, healthy, and on the right path towards a good future. In recent years, the focus on the mental health of students has come to the forefront of the conversation across the country.

In this generation of students, children seem to be more open and honest about their own mental health struggles as the stigma of mental health is starting to break. Of course, there are still many cases of bullying, in-school and at-home struggles, and the rise of suicide rates. However, the openness of a lot of students has made it easier for counselors, parents, and health professionals to help students find the right support they need in their challenges and struggles.

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Community Connect Host Lisa Germani, with Karen Muston, a counselor for Lighthouse Connections Academy, a virtual academy that is part of Pearson Virtual Schools

Karen Muston, a counselor for Lighthouse Connections Academy, a virtual academy that is part of Pearson Virtual Schools, joins Lisa Germani on Community Connect to discuss the mental health of students and how the growing conversation around mental health is helping students find the support they need.

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Muston also discussed the challenges students faced when the COVID-19 pandemic shut down schools, but how the students at her already virtual school could transition well as they were already virtual. She did however touch on the struggles students had without the personal interactions they find in school and how a transition from in-person to virtual saw many deal with changes to the state of their mental health.

She also talked about the ways parents can approach their children about being open with their mental health challenges, and pointed out that parents should always listen to their children and not to dismiss their concerns as it may have a lasting impact on their health.

Muston went on to emphasize the importance of seeking help by a trusted adult, whether that’s at school, at home, or by a healthcare professional. Children shouldn’t have to face their challenges alone, and support systems are out there for them if they are guided toward them and are made aware that they exist.

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