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Mental Health Support at CCS


 T. Schinkel
 

Mrs. Tricia Schinkel (BA, MC:AT)

Registered Psychotherapist, Art Therapist

School Counsellor
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Office Hours: Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday; 8:30-3:30 (WEST 5th); Unity - as requested

Mental Health Services

  • Focus on student care, mental health & wellness, belonging, social and emotional development
  • Design and deliver school wide social-emotional learning (SEL) programs and curriculum that can improve student outcomes and provide learning for ALL students about tools to identify, express, and manage their emotions in healthy ways (TIER 1 - WHOLE SCHOOL SUPPORT. ex. Zones of Regulation curriculum)
  • Assess students social/emotional needs and challenges (TIER 2 - SOME STUDENTS SPECIFIC SUPPORT)
  • Provide short term individual counselling support to students as needed (TIER 3 - INDIVIDUAL SUPPORT)
  • Consult and collaborate with educators, staff, and parents related to student social-emotional needs
  • Advocate for student social and emotional needs
  • Provide resources for and connect families to the community for long term supports
  • Stay up to date with professional development to increase knowledge for evidence based practice

Students can be referred for individual short term support by teacher, parents, admin, or self-referral. The goal of the individual sessions is to assess and evaluate their functioning and to provide short term skill building for emotions and managing stress. Students are offered 3-6 visits with the School Counsellor (SC), unless determined otherwise. The school counsellor will assess whether more visits are needed or whether students/families may be referred for long term counselling support within the community. Students over 12 have the right to seek confidential counselling, without the consent of a parent (Child and Family Services Act). 

 Mental Health and Social Media                                          

Social media and, specifically pornography, is having a significant impact on our children and students. Take the time to read more from the InTouch publication in June 2022,  the impact of pornography. Below are the references that were used in the article:

Parent presentation - It's time we talked (itstimewetalked.com)

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/articles/how-to-tell-who-your-kid-is-talking-to-online-and-how-to-keep-their-convos-cool

https://www.brettullman.com/2014/11/17/christians-sex-education/

https://www.commonsensemedia.org/articles/how-to-talk-to-teens-about-dealing-with-online-predators

 National School Counselling Week                                     

Did you know that CCS is 1 of 6 Christian Schools in Ontario that has a school counsellor? These school counsellors meet monthly for peer supervision and consultation so that they can continue to provide the best support for students and families. 
 

 Mental Health Awareness Week                                          

Every May, nationally we acknowledge Mental Health Week. At CCS, we have begun to bring more awareness to Mental Health Month and the goal is to emphasize that we all have mental health and just like physical health, learning about and caring for our mental wellness is important. The student wellness team has helped bring awareness to mental wellness themes throughout the year but also during the month of May. 

MHW2021 Homepage - Canadian Mental Health Association (mentalhealthweek.ca)

Mental Health over the Holidays                                                  

Heading into the holidays can be a stressful time of year and to add to the stress this year, there are the constant health updates that bombard us wherever we go. Here are some tips to take care of your mental health and the mental health of your children. 
"When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me great joy" Psalm 94:19
 
Seven tips to get ready for the holidays by Children's Mental Health Ontario
https://cmho.org/seven-tips-to -get-ready-for-the-holidays/
 

Back to School Resources                                                   

Every year, when returning back to school, there can be a mix of excitement and nervousness. For those that lean more towards anxiety at their return to school, check out these tips:

5 tips for transitioning back to school:

  1. Get back into a routine - Create night time routines, morning routines, after school routines, and visual schedules/checklists. These will all help to establish structure, which is so important and may have been a bit lost this summer, because, let's be honest, it was needed! 

  2. Prepare the night before - Get kids involved in packing their own lunches, packing school bags, and picking out clothes the night before. Give a bit more time for kids to unwind before bed: put on some quiet music, read a book, use a prayer journal. 

  3. Validate emotions - Recognize that even uncomfortable emotions, such as worry, fear, and stress are normal emotions that may be heightened given the circumstances. Be understanding and help normalize their feelings. Look at things that will be the same about returning to school and what things will be different. Prepare your child, as best as you can, for what school may look like. 

  4. Utilize coping skills - When emotions are high, it can be difficult to think clearly, reason, or make sense of things. Each child has things they do that can help them stay calm or return to calm. Come up with some new skills together; including using transitional items - stuffed animals, scented items, stress balls. 

  5. Talk to your child about ways to follow new safety rules - Discuss how to safely engage with friends, how to wear masks, wash hands, etc. Make it fun; model the norm and they can follow your calm and fun approach to these new practices. Feeling prepared can help calm some of these fears.

Anxiety Canada - coping with back to school anxiety

HWDSB resources for mental wellness

Centre for Disease Control - parent checklist for return to school

Child Mind Institute: Helping kids back to school routine

Parent Guide to a Mentally Healthy Return to School - Niagara District School Board

Free Hamilton Workshops for Back to School Anxiety - Your Space

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Mental Health Resources - COVID 19 Response

In response to COVID 19, a list of mental health resources was created for parents and families:

Mental Health Resources:

Crisis Response Resources: 

         905-972-8338 or 1-844-972-8338 

  • KidsHelp.ca (text, phone, live chat, and resources available) 

    1-888-668-6868
  • 911
  • Go to McMaster Children's Hospital ER: CHYMES (Child and Youth Mental Health Emergency Services)

Zones of Regulation

In 2019-2020, when the school counselling program began at Calvin, the Zones of Regulation curriculum was introduced as a school wide initiative to increase social and emotional awareness. This continues to be taught so that kids have a universal language to label, express, and manage emotions. 

Zones of Regulation Explained