Bring back all UCDSB Student Support Partners!

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A recent decision by UCDSB School Board Trustees resulted in the devastating loss of 100% of all Child and Youth/Behaviourist (student support partner) positions.

In the recent UCDSB Tell Them From Me survey of 2018-2019,

  • 33% of UCDSB students report moderate or high levels of anxiety (the Canadian norm is 25%)
  • 33% of UCDSB students report moderate of high levels of depression (the Canadian norm is 24%)
  • Elementary students were asked, "What do you want to learn more about?"
    • Mental Health was the number 1 response

For those of you who don’t know exactly what Student Support Partners do, here is a small snippet:

-On average, they intervene in at least one suicide crisis a week.
-They create and implement safety plans for kids of the highest risk of harm to both themselves and others.
-They support all aspects of behaviour, including those with autism.
-Alongside teachers, they co-teach strategies like self-regulation and conflict management.
-They provide one-on-one support for students who have anxiety, ADHD, depression, learning disabilities, self-esteem issues, and much more.
-Almost daily, they intervene and help students who cut themselves and do other forms of self-harm.
-They provide safe space during lunch period for the most vulnerable of students
 

They are there for the safety of ALL students. They keep our classrooms safe – the entire system safe.

In September, these professionals will not be there. There is no contingency plan for frontline mental health support for the 27,000 students in the Upper Canada District School Board.