Helpful Tips for Educators
Signs and Symptoms of Emotional Health Issues
There are many signs and symptoms that may suggest a student is suffering from an emotional health issue. These can be noticeable in a student’s change in behavior. Some examples include…
- Feeling sad/down more than usual (ex. Showing unhappiness, displaying distress or always crying)
- Inability to concentrate in class
- Loss of interest in activities
- Poor attendance; being absent or tardy more often
- Isolating self from friends and activities
- Grades are dropping
- Acting out in class
- Significant tiredness, low energy or problems sleeping in class
- Inability to cope with daily problems or stress
- Excessive anger, hostility or violence
- Expressing suicidal thoughts to teachers or students
How to Approach a Student
If a staff member notices that a student is displaying any signs or symptoms of an emotional health disorder and is comfortable addressing the concern, having a one-on-one talk will help determine if the student needs further assistance. Some helpful quotes that teachers can use are…
- Hi. How are things going?
- I have been noticing some changes with you such as _________. What is going through your mind at the moment?
- It seems like something is bothering you. Tell me what has been going on lately.
- I notice that you have been distracted lately. Let’s talk about what has been distracting you.
If after the conversation it seems that the student is indeed struggling with some issue, staff members can connect the student with the school counselor who may in turn refer them to the YScreen Program. If a staff member is not comfortable approaching the student and no immediate safety concerns are present, they should share their concerns with the school counselor to follow-up with the student. A brief description about the YScreen Program will be beneficial for the students. Staff members can help by monitoring a student’s emotional health and behavior at school and by referring them for further assistance if needed.
Making a Referral to YScreen
If staff members or concerned parents notice that a student or their child is showing any of the signs and symptoms above, they can direct these concerns to the school counselor for further evaluation. The school counselor will then refer the student to YScreen if deemed necessary.