As part of a larger push by DFL Senators to address mental health issues in Minnesota, Senator Kevin Dahle has authored legislation (S.F. 260) that would aid in identifying the early warning signs of mental illness in children and adolescents. The bill adapts teacher licensure renewal requirements to include instruction on a more in-depth understanding of mental illness in students.
“Mental illness has received a lot of attention recently, especially in its connection to violence; the long-term solution to this problem lies with our kids,” said Sen. Dahle. “Though the vast majority of students with mental illness never become violent, it is critical that teachers are given the training they need to provide for students with additional mental and emotional needs. Teachers can never replace the role of a parent, but our schools must remain a strong partner in helping our children.”
The bill provides for mental illness trauma and accommodations for students’ mental illnesses, while clarifying a parent’s role in mental health issues, autism, and related topics. The bill would require all licensed teachers to undergo this training as part of their licensure renewal process.
“Parents, teachers, schools, and students all have a shared goal of providing for individuals with mental illness. It is my hope that we will be able to all work together to give our kids the resources they deserve.”