Clay County District Schools will partner with Clay Behavioral, and other local mental health agencies and nonprofits to discuss bullying, risky behaviors, social skills, and coping skills with students. This first, daylong event is part of a broader observance of Mental Health Month throughout May.

WHEN:            Tuesday, May 16

9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

WHERE:         Wilkinson Junior High School

5025 County Road 218

Middleburg, FL 32068

The goal of the event, titled “From Trials to Triumph,” is to remove the stigma around discussing and admitting mental health struggles, and expand access to professional help if students request it. In addition to presentations from mental health professionals, the school district will also make school counselors available at the school for several days after the event to make sure students have ample opportunity to talk with a trusted adult. The goal is to expand this event to multiple schools in the next school year.

“When we engage in prevention and early identification, we can look for warning signs and begin the process of providing help early. The fact that Clay County school district members coordinated this event, bringing community partners together, shows how much they value students and recognize that mental health is essential to overall health. By providing teachers and school personnel with additional tools to use in working with students and families they are helping to make a difference for us all and increasing the odds of having healthy successful students, said Irene Toto, CEO of Clay Behavioral Health Center, Inc.

“We hope this experience leads to authentic conversations with our students, encourages them to learn more about the resources for mental health, and lessens the stigma of mental illness. If students know why mental health is essential to their overall health and well-being, they are better equipped to seek help when they need it and to recognize warning signs among their friends, family and classmates,” said Superintendent Addison Davis.