VIEWPOINT: The connection between students’ mental health and school


Sedona Brickley

With so many things going on at one time, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and to overlook the importance of your mental heatlh.

School’s main purpose is to educate students, meanwhile providing them a place to ensure their well-being, and help to gain social skills.  However, with mental health struggles, it is extremely difficult for students to balance work, home life, school, all while trying to be happy.

This year, our school introduced the Wellness Center in hopes to make a welcoming place for students to come for support with mental health while on campus. That being said, do students truly feel welcome to go to the center when they are struggling? Maybe some do, but for many the answer is no. I have experienced this dilemma on multiple occasions myself. 

Mental health issues, more specifically depression, can lead to fatigue, struggling to focus, and much more. Coming to school means having to socialize with peers and teachers, trying to focus on lessons, and not seem too sad. Once you get home you still can not fully relax, as you have many homework assignments to finish.

Absences due to mental health reasons should be normalized

— Sedona Brickley

Most weeks you are expected at school Monday through Friday. Upperclassmen have jobs after school, many students have sports, and still try to have a social life on top of it all. There are only so many hours in a day to complete all of our responsibilities which  often leaves minimal amounts of time for  sparing time for self-care.

Sometimes all you need is a day to sit at home and rest. Although, there is a feeling of fear that comes with  missing even just a single day of school because assignments stack up and can be difficult to complete without teacher guidance. It can be overwhelming and stressful, ultimately making one feel worse. 

During this time of year specifically, students may be experiencing seasonal depression which continues into January and runs through final exams. One thing piles on top of the other, and leads to an eventual and spontaneous bursts of unmotivated and unhappy students at school. 

Don’t get me wrong, it is extremely important to your well being, and academic career to come to school as much as possible and to prioritize success, however there are better ways to handle mental health other than making students feel like they must come to school everyday regardless of how they may feel. 

Absences due to mental health reasons should be normalized. Not obsessive absences, but rather the occasional day where one needs to rest instead of attending school should be.