In fourth grade, Markos started to struggle socially with his classmates. His once easy friendships became strained with fear and behavioral outbursts. When he got really frustrated, he would throw items in the classroom or yell at his teacher.
The Washburn Center therapist in his school worked with the 10-year-old to nurture positive social skills, re-build friendships and learn how to calm his anger before disrupting the entire classroom.
“When we see a student with disruptive behaviors, we ask, ‘What’s behind that behavior?,’” explained Carol Meyer, Principal at Prairie View Elementary in Eden Prairie, adding that the Washburn Center therapist based in her school helps teachers “look at a child from the social and emotional perspective and gives students the tool set they need to succeed.”
“Our teachers say they are grateful to have the Washburn Center therapist on site because it helps their students do better. Unless a child has solid mental health, it’s difficult for them to reach their academic potential. ”
-Principal Carol Meyer
This fall, Washburn Center’s School-based program expanded to include Kennedy High School in Bloomington. With therapists in 22 Eden Prairie, Bloomington and Minneapolis schools, the agency is one of the largest providers of school-based mental health services in Hennepin County. providing families convenient access
This school-based model provides families convenient access to services and removes the barrier of transportation. Providing therapeutic services in schools makes support more accessible to children who otherwise might not get care – so they have a better chance at reaching their academic potential.
“Academics will often take a back seat if a child is struggling with friendships or depression,” explained Tim Beekmann, Principal at Eden Lake Elementary in Eden Prairie. “We continually ask: how can we support children’s social and emotional learning? The Washburn Center therapist in our school plays a big role.”