As expected, school personnel are focused on promoting strong academic achievement. However, an often-underestimated influence on performance is student mental health.
Since the brain is not fully matured until age 20 or later, most students don’t have fully matured systems of emotional regulation and behavioral control during key educational phases: kindergarten through college. This can be a challenge for teachers and professors who have deep expertise in their specialties, but little training to support student mental health.
Fortunately, there is a range of well-researched mental health interventions linked to improved academic outcomes. Campus-based mental health systems provide social and emotional support for students, empower the people supporting students at school and at home, and address barriers to learning. Such systems ensure that mental health supports and interventions are appropriate for the student body’s unique needs.
In the Spring of 2017, the Hogg Foundation accepted proposals for a grant opportunity aimed at improving academic outcomes and mental wellness in educational settings through culturally and linguistically appropriate mental health supports and interventions.
Through this three-year grant program, the foundation awarded nearly $2 million to Texas public schools, charter schools, school districts, college and university campuses, and nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations. Current grantees are as follows:
- Baylor University (Waco, Texas)
- Children’s Grief Center of El Paso (El Paso, Texas)
- Communities in Schools of North Texas (Lewisville, Texas)
- Lockhart Independent School District (Lockhart, Texas)
- Texas A&M International University (Laredo, Texas)
- The University of Texas at Austin (Austin, TX)
- University of North Texas (Denton, Texas)