A physically distanced classroom is seen at Kensington Community School amidst the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday, September 1, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Carlos Osorio

B.C. schools receive $2-million cash boost to promote mental health

School districts will determine how the funds are used based on their needs

Schools in British Columbia are getting an extra $2 million for mental health programs from the provincial government.

Judy Darcy, the minister of mental health and addictions, said the province is spending more on mental health programs this year because children are facing an unprecedented return to school during the COVID-19 pandemic.

A total of $3.75 million will be spent in the 2020-21 school year to promote mental wellness and provide additional support for students, families and educators, Darcy told a news conference Wednesday.

School districts will determine how the funds are used based on their needs.

Darcy said she’s heard from families and teachers that they are going through a “roller coaster of emotions” as schools are set to reopen next week.

“Some people are grappling with high levels of anxiety and stress about the return to school, and others, frankly, are feeling a sense of relief after months of uncertainty.”

The government said in a news release that surveys have shown the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an increase in mental health and substance use challenges.

It said there are a number of free and inexpensive counselling services that are available online, by video and by phone.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

Education

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Penticton Vees to play in two-month Okanagan Cup tournament

The action commences Friday at 6 p.m. at the SOEC.

Keremeos Fire Department pull off steep angle riverside rescue

A senior on a scooter was travelling along the top of the dyke when he fell

Morning Start: One Year on Uranus Is 84 Years on Earth

Your morning start for Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020

‘Perfect storm’ causes influx of black widows in the Okanagan

The region’s only venomous spider has come out in full force this year

B.C. reports 91 new cases as officials remain worried over ‘clusters of COVID-19

There have now been a total of 8,395 cases in B.C. since the pandemic began

EDITORIAL: Clearing the smoke

Wildfires have resulted in heavy smoke and poor air quality

Kelowna man’s child porn collection ‘traversed the spectrum of depravity,’ court hears

Terry Krock was caught in possession of between 7,000 and 12,000 child porn files

COVID-19 exposure at Merritt pub

The exposure happened on Sept. 19 at the pub of the Coldwater Hotel

UPDATE: Person safely pulled from Vernon creek culvert

First responders from multiple agencies assist in getting individual out of the creek

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Police watchdog investigating after man injured in Penticton RCMP cells

Man suffers serious injuries after being lodged into cells at the detachment

Four more cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

There are 31 active cases in isolation in the health region

Canada’s active COVID-19 cases top 10,000 as daily new cases triple over the past month

Dr. Tam repeated her warning to young people, who have made up the majority of recent cases

Most Read