Blog

  • September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

    Posted by Tesney Davis on 9/2/2021

    There is help. There is hope.

    Suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth ages 10-24 and the leading cause of death among 13-year-olds, (CDC, 2019). By starting the conversation, providing support, and facilitating help for those experiencing suicidal thoughts, we can prevent death by suicide and destigmatize mental health issues. Although our state continues to exist in a mental health provider shortage, TCS is relentlessly committed to providing mental health services to our students, families, and employees. We are unapologetic in our efforts to keep mental health at the forefront of our efforts to remove barriers for our students.

     

    At TCS, we strive to bring awareness of suicide prevention to our families, students, and staff through a variety of services and programs. Suicide prevention training is provided to all TCS employees by the district's social workers. TCS provides additional training and certification to employees through the Youth Mental Health First Aid program. Our students receive suicide prevention and awareness training through the  Second Steps Program and we have crisis protocols in place to assist students experiencing a mental health crisis. These examples are just a small part of all we do daily to ensure our students are mentally healthy and safe.

     

    We feel it is crucial to share resources for immediate safety and long-term support, both for those experiencing suicidal thoughts and their families:

     

    Please reach out to your child's school counselor or school social worker if you have concerns about your child's mental health. We are here to help and have resources available to assist both students and their families.

     

     

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  • Mental Health Monthly

    Posted by Posted by Tesney Davis, MSW, LICSW on 5/3/2021 on 5/3/2021

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  • TCS Believes That Mental Health Matters

    Posted by Tesney Davis, MSW, LICSW on 2/25/2021

    Recently, the Alabama State Department of Education passed legislation with increased funding for 102 school districts. This grant funding established the position of a Mental Health Service Coordinator (MHSC) and appropriated $4,530,000 to provide grants to local education agencies (LEAs) to employ a MHSC to support and expand coordination of mental health services throughout their school system.

     

    The goal of Mental Health Coordinator position is to ensure that children and adolescents, both general and special education, enrolled in local school systems have access to high-quality mental health prevention, early intervention, and treatment services. TCS has long been leading the way in providing school-based mental health services to our students. However, we recognize more can be done to support our students’ mental health. We believe that mental health care is as important as physical health care, and recognize our students cannot reach their full potential academically unless they are healthy socially, emotionally, and mentally. Some of the service areas we hope to expand include:

     

    • High-quality services focused on mental wellness that builds on existing school programs, services, and strategies,
    • A continuum of care in a school setting; from basic mental health awareness and promotion through intensive intervention
    • Authentic parent/family education and engagement in mental health initiatives,
    • Meaningful children and youth involvement in mental health awareness and education,
    • Culturally and linguistically competent service provision, and
    • Data-driven planning, evaluation, and quality improvement.

     

    Additionally, we recognize our faculty and staff need ongoing support to ensure they are emotionally and mentally prepared to foster a healthy learning environment and respond to our students’ emotional needs. EAP services for our employees and PD focused on self-care, burnout, and stress are ways we have traditionally addressed employee mental health needs, but we strive to do more in the areas of mental health prevention, education, and services. We recently started offering the following resources for our employees:

     

    • Weekly virtual Peace of Minds meetings with our EAP provider covering topics focused on mental health prevention and awareness,
    • Decompression Sessions for teachers to meet virtually with peers and discuss challenges and solutions to the stress of teaching during a pandemic,
    • Educating employees on the use of sick or personal leave days when they need to take off for mental health,
    • Wellness check-ins,
    • Mental health coaching app and website, and
    • Access to a robust collection of mental health information on the TCS webpage.

     

    I am excited to serve our students and employees in the area of mental health coordination. I invite community stakeholders and parents to join the charge in making sure our students’ mental health is a priority. Watch the TCS website as we provide weekly content related to mental health and ways you can get involved!

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  • Peace. Love. Blessings. Coping with Holiday Stress

    Posted by Tesney Davis on 12/17/2020

    The holiday season often brings unwelcomed guests such as stress, anxiety, and depression. TCS Mental Health Services Social Worker Tesney Davis, LICSW, offers these tips to help you and your family cope with holiday stress at home.

     

     Click to view this presentation 

     

    Peace Love Blessings

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  • Six Tips for The New School Year

    Posted by Eddie McCLINTON on 8/20/2020 4:00:00 PM

    Useful Info for the new school year.

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  • Maintain a Positive Attitude

    Posted by Eddie McCLINTON on 8/20/2020 9:00:00 AM

    Our world is changing every day and it seems like the bad things are being put on blast. The school year is anything but normal and you may have a million thoughts running through your mind. But did you know you have the power to decide to BE POSITIVE? What we do and say has a major impact on how we feel. Here are a few ways to protect your peace and have a positive mindset.

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  • Tips for Educational Success in a Virtual Setting

    Posted by Eddie McCLINTON on 8/19/2020 4:00:00 PM

    Students will want to find a quiet place in the home with as few distractions as possible. Needed supplies, like pencils and paper should be readily available, and phones should be kept away from the workspace to minimize distractions. In order to have the best possible learning experience, it is recommended that students have a regular bedtime. No matter the grade level, getting enough sleep is vital for learning. Finally, a positive outlook will help with the daily routine. As always, students may reach out to teachers and counselors for academic, social, and emotional needs.

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  • Tips for Virtual Learning

    Posted by Eddie McCLINTON on 8/19/2020
     
    The countdown has begun, school is almost back in session!  How do you prepare to learn from home? 
    Teachers expect you to be active participants in your virtual classroom, just as they do when you are in the classroom.  Learning in this new environment can be both exciting and overwhelming.  Creating a space where you are able to focus on schoolwork and be productive in your learning is going to play a big part in your success. Take a look at some suggestions on how to prepare yourself and your home for this virtual learning experience, and have fun learning with your classmates and teachers!
     
     
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  • Tips for Support

    Posted by Latonia Gaines on 5/12/2020

    TCS counselor Latonya Gaines offers these tips on supporting students during distance learning.

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  • How to Talk to and Support Children During a Pandemic: a Webinar for Parents.

    Posted by Tesney Davis on 4/24/2020
    This webinar discusses communication strategies for parents to discuss the COVID-19 Pandemic with children and adolescents using strategies that are age-appropriate and empathetic. The information provided includes principles of effective communication with different age groups, addressing misinformation, dealing with fears and anxiety, and serving as a role model for coping. This webinar helps parents understand and react appropriately to the emotional and behavioral responses their children may have to the COVID-19 Pandemic, as well as when and how to seek professional help.

     

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