Dear Mt. Hebron PTSA members:
Please read this House Bill 0461 whose primary purpose is "...requiring a county board of education to excuse at least 1 day of absence in each quarter of each school year for a student's mental health needs;..."
Fact: Suicide was the leading cause of death for youth ages 15-19 in Howard County between 2014-2018 (Source: MD Vital Statistics Administration) When surveyed, 1 in 6 high school students seriously considered attempting suicide. We believe allowing students the ability to take an excused absence from school for self-care is a step forward in caring for the mental health of our young people.
PTSA's Youth Mental Health Advocacy Team (YMHAT) is working on testimony to present at the Tuesday, February 16 Howard County Delegation Hearing on Statewide Issues at 7pm on Zoom. The YMHAT is currently made up of Caroline Bodziak (PTSA President), Ana Nunez (PTSA Mental Health Committee Chair), and Erinn Camp Mansour (PTSA First VP and Advocacy Director). If you would like to join the YMHAT please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is the start of a larger advocacy effort on behalf of the PTSA into Youth Mental Health and other topics affecting our students and community. You can expect more "Advocacy Alerts" in the future on such important issues. We invite you to join us in this exciting effort!
Thank you so much,