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Returning to School, Mental health is just as Essential as Physical Health

After a Bill was signed by Gov. J.B. Pritzker in August, Illinois students will now be able to take up to five excused mental or behavioral health days off starting in January 2022. With attending school online and everyone getting restless the challenges were not easy for kids and students learning through Zoom as well as their teachers and professionals.

This is a benefit that is essential in the midst of the pandemic that is ever-changing and with insecurity of the future, taking mental health days will definitely ease stress for many.

State Rep. Barbara Hernandez says, "Having this now for all students across the state will be really beneficial, especially with what's going on with COVID,". "Many students feel stressed, and have developed anxiety and depression because they're not able to see teachers and friends, and may have lower grades due to remote learning. This will allow them to get the help they need."

If a student requests a second mental health day then their family will be contacted by a counselor, if necessary for the student options for professional help will also be discussed to give the students the best care that they need.

One small change, many other systems should begin to follow. Other states that have taken similar steps are Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Nevada, Oregon and Virginia.