1/25/2021: What’s Happening To Our Kids Without School Open This Long

A number of you sent me this article yesterday. These stories we’re all seeing now are a combo of gut-wrenching, maddening, infuriating, & sobering.
On the one hand, I’m pleased to see that a national paper like the NYT took up a story like this, even tho the focus is on Clark County, NV, specifically. On the other hand, if you google search the main terms, you only come up w one other national paper to share it – The Hill…along w a brief headline mention on Yahoo. Sounds too familiar to the other stories I’ve shared abt suicides & overdoses that’ve received little attn.
We’re almost a yr into this pandemic. I get the need to continue to share case numbers & death rates for the virus. But aren’t we also at a pt where the media shouldn’t be playing games w respect to how the MH of our kids is being impacted, the longer & longer these shut downs go?
I’m not even suggesting that any/most/all schools should automatically open. What I’m suggesting is transparency. Clark County has had 18 student suicides in 9 months – thats 2X ALL of last yr. 
Now, please follow my math here: this is 2X in only ONE county, yes. But what we know is that we lose approximately 1 million to suicide every yr, globally (even before lock downs). We also know that Covid has claimed just over 2 million deaths in roughly a yr. It’s by no means apples to apples, but Covid losses have been front & center…whereas suicides – which are their own epidemic EVERY yr, & rising now to new highs, don’t get nearly the same attn. The rates are going up highest in our kids!
Go further…Clark County implemented a system which scans student writings on district-issued iPads, & from June to Oct, it generated more than 3,100 alerts, indicating behavior such as suicide & self-harm research. So the impact is NOT just suicide or overdose numbers. It’s ALL these kids whose MH is impacted…not to mention the long term impacts of cumulative trauma we haven’t even seen yet. 
The time to be more transparent w the #s, & the debate abt the pros/cons of opening up schools is now. If not now, when? When the rates go to 3X instead of 2x?

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