The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) recognizes the need for schools to support the whole child and specifically acknowledges the importance of student health and wellness, including mental health. ESSA also provides states with an opportunity to ensure equitable access to quality education and the conditions that support student learning. Health, including mental health, is a key part of this. ESSA transitions authority from the federal government to state education agencies. Thus, as states begin to implement ESSA, it is critical they do so in a way that supports health and wellness. This resource is a supplement to “State ESSA Plans to Support Student Health and Wellness: A Framework for Action” and provides more detailed ESSA implementation recommendations for supporting mental health and wellbeing.
Mental Health America understands that racism undermines mental health. Therefore, we are committed to anti-racism in all that we do. This means that we pledge to work against individual racism, interpersonal racism, and institutional racism in all their forms.