ORLANDO, Fla. – Solutionaries is a show that examines complicated issues and spotlights the people working to solve them.
Amid a national crisis in youth mental health, experts are working to understand why children are struggling and how society can best help them.
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Hospital emergency rooms have become the front lines for young people battling symptoms of mental illness, but a new study shows children often don’t get professional help after they leave.
CBS correspondent Stephen Stock and his team visited the front lines where medical staff, parents and kids are dealing with what is a destructive cycle.
Note: This story contains frank conversations about the mental health crisis, including suicide.
If you or someone you love is in crisis, please reach out to the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by calling or texting 988.
A solution in Central Florida
The shortage of mental health specialists is an issue across the U.S., including here in Florida.
At the University of Central Florida, the next generation of school psychologists has just finished up their first semester of a program called Project Central.
Students here can earn a master’s degree and a graduate certificate in the field for little to no cost thanks to funding from the U.S. Department of Education.
“Historically, this program used to be focused just on special education teachers,” said Dena Slanda, a research associate in the School of Teacher Education. “Now, being able to prepare both special educators and school psychologists is really the critical piece moving forward.”
At the same time, these scholars are working in local school districts — providing a more immediate solution for kids in crisis.
Food’s out for summer
Millions of students in the U.S. rely on free school meals to stay healthy which means summer break can be the hungriest time of year for kids.
That need is what inspired a Texas school district to find a solution — to reopen its cafeteria and make sure every child is served a hot delicious meal.
Max Massey with News 6 sister station KSAT found out why the San Antonio district takes great pride in its summer food program.
Book ban controversy
With children out of school, local libraries are getting busy.
At the same time, Florida is at the center of a hot debate over whether certain books should be banned in schools and even public libraries.
Here’s the question: Who should decide what’s appropriate for children?
How you can help
If you want to suggest a topic to feature in an upcoming episode, go to solutionariesnetwork.com/ideas.
A new episode of Solutionaries is available every Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. on News 6 and on News 6+ for your smart TV (Roku, Fire TV, Apple TV, Google TV).
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