For Staff/Educators

An illustration of a teacher wearing an orange-yellow sweater on with a large collar and buttons. She has long, medium-brown wavy hair and is balancing a red apple on her head.

Supporting Mental Health in the Classroom

Interacting with young people on a daily basis, educators at places like Holt Public Schools are often the first in line to notice mental health problems among their students. These mental health challenges often manifest in the form of learning difficulties and inappropriate classroom behavior. These signs clearly tell us that our students will be unable to learn if they are not feeling mentally healthy and emotionally safe. It is crucial that these mental health problems are discovered as early as possible in order to ensure that students are getting the necessary support to thrive in the classroom. As a part of this resource, we have compiled a list of warning signs and additional resources to highlight the ways you can be a part of helping students and their families.

Teachers are our first responders when it comes to identifying symptoms of mental health problems early on in their student’s lives.

As educators, it is critical to have knowledge of the warning signs for mental health issues. Consult with a school counselor, nurse, or administrator and the student’s parents if you observe a student exhibiting one or more of the following behaviors:

  • Feeling very sad or withdrawn for more than two weeks
  • Seriously trying to harm oneself or planning to do so
  • Experiencing sudden overwhelming fear, racing heart, or fast breathing
  • Desiring to hurt others or getting into repeated fights
  • Expressing severe out-of-control behavior meant to hurt oneself or others
  • Not eating, throwing up, or using laxatives to lose weight
  • Experiencing intense worries or fears that affect daily activities
  • Extreme difficulty concentrating or staying still
  • Repeated use of drugs or alcohol
  • Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
  • Facing drastic changes in their behavior or personality

Adapted from