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School Safety Initiatives & Mental Health - Reasons to be Concerned About the Passage of SB 7026



"Stunning" Report: Parkland Superintendent Misled Public About Shooter's Past


Florida Seeks to Expand Ineffective Mental Health Screening in Schools


One Thing President Trump Can Do Now to Make Schools Safer

Expanding Unproven "Social Emotional Learning" Will Not Make Schools Safer

Parents Beware: Mental Screening of Students Ramps Up in Texas


Turning Teachers Into Psychotherapists Will Not Prevent School Shootings


Florida "School Safety" Bill Would Make Schools Anything But Safe


The Parkland shooter was well known to the mental health system for years and signs of his blatant violent tendencies were ignored. He had been diagnosed as developmentally delayed since age 3. He was in a school for the emotionally disturbed until one year before starting at the high school and then was expelled for behavior issues. Many at the school, the sheriff's department, and DCF knew his mental health problems. Increased mental screening would not have stopped this tragedy.
 
Mental health diagnostic criteria are readily admitted to be subjective and difficult to use in children and teens that are all undergoing rapid developmental changes. Under the right circumstances, everyone is "at-risk." Many psychiatric organizations including the World Health Organization, the U.S. Surgeon General, and the American Psychiatric have these kinds of statements in their documents. (Quotes available here).  It therefore makes little sense to screen "at risk" students, because the net would become impossibly large.
 
Psychiatric experts trained for years readily admit that their efforts to predict which patients will become violent are only slightly better than chance, so it seems unwise to train already overburdened school staff for a few hours and placing this enormous responsibility on them. A psychologist involved in violence prediction research said, "There is no instrument that is specifically useful or validated for identifying potential school shooters or mass murderers." Another said that doing so would be a danger to both public safety and civil liberties. Many experts rejected the idea of expanded school mental health screening after the horrific Sandy Hook shooting.
 
Mental screening is notoriously inaccurate with one instrument having an 84% false positive rate.  This high rate of false positives will use up scarce resources that could go to increase counseling services for those with a true need. Even the San Francisco school district rejected a mental health-screening program for this reason.
 
Inaccurate and subjective screening and diagnoses could well follow a student for life due to lack of privacy protection of medical and mental health issues in school records under the severely weak, outdated, and gutted federal FERPA student privacy law. 
 
The perpetrator was reported to be on medication for ADHD and possibly antidepressants, both of which are known to cause increased or new aggression, hostility, and violent reactions in those taking them.More mental health screening and treatment would not have stopped this. The vast majority of school/mass shootings and stabbings have involved psychiatric drugs. (See the table below and  www.ssristories.org.) It is imperative that this association be further studied.
 
Mental screening has already been weaponized in some instances to require students to align with certain political orthodoxies. (See details here). This is very harmful to the inalienable right of freedom of conscience.
 
SB 7026 contains no consent language and ignores federal and Florida statutes requiring parental consent for mental health screening and evaluations.  Both the Every Student Succeeds Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Act require parental consent for mental health evaluations and treatment or placement.  Florida Statute 1006.0625 says, "A parent may refuse psychological screening of the student."
 

Association between psychotropic medications & school shootings



Beware the Dangers of Scoial Emotional Learning



 


Debunking 5 False Claims About "Social Emotional Learning"

"PBIS": Behind the Feds' Wacky Scheme to Modify Children's Behavior

Schools Ditch Academics for Emotional Manipulation

 

Protect Your Child's Data & Psychological Privacy






 



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B) STATE LEVEL: SUPPORT BILLS AND RESOLUTIONS TO GENUINELY DECREASE TESTING STOP SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING, COMPETENCY-BASED EDUCATION, AND  FEDERAL INTERFERENCE, AND REFORM CURRICULUM. DEMAND OF GOVERNOR SCOTT & THE LEGISLATURE THAT FLORIDA CANCEL THE CONTRACT WITH AIR FOR THE STATE COMMON CORE TEST CALLED THE FSA! 

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