Madison Superintendent Carlton Jenkins said the district is working to rebalance its distance-learning efforts to meet the needs of the students, parents and staff during the health crisis.
“We’ve never been through this before. … We’re trying to get it right,” he said of the effort to lessen the impact of distance learning on student mental health.
Jenkins said he hopes the Madison School District will get more support and guidance to support student mental wellbeing through the work group.
“The more expertise we can get to guide our work to provide our students and our staff and our parents (with support) will be beneficial,” he said.
Dana Monogue, superintendent of the Middleton-Cross Plains School District, said she has heard that students in her district are dealing with social and emotional problems related to isolation, loneliness, grief and loss.
“They’re dealing with a variety of family stressors, as you can imagine,” she said.
Public Health Madison and Dane County director Janel Heinrich said she hopes to be able to identify and utilize new mental health resources for students through the work group.
Parisi said the work group will begin its effort to address the social, emotional and mental needs of area students as soon as possible.