By KSHSAA Staff
TOPEKA, Kan. (KSHSAA Covered) – In an ongoing effort to support Kansas students and coaches, the KSHSAA has released Mental Health Matters, a five-part video series aimed at helping coaches, sponsors, and all school leaders better support their students who may be struggling with mental health challenges. Through the support and leadership of Anne Weese, PhD, a licensed psychologist, and member of the KSHSAA Sports Medicine Advisory Committee, schools now have access to a new resource to better prepare those leading the students in their activity programs.
Any student, no matter how successful they may be in sports or activities can be impacted by mental health struggles. Participation in school sports and activities can help build tremendous resilience and provide a level of mental health protection, but there are also aspects of activity participation that can serve as a risk to the mental health of students. Conditions such as anxiety and depression are becoming more common in the adolescent age group, and this video series provides real-world, common-sense guidance for coaches and sponsors in supporting those students and help connect them to the professional support they may need. This video series also provides some excellent information for school leaders in developing an after school mental health support and emergency action plan.
All schools are encouraged to utilize these videos during in-service or other staff development opportunities. Coaches and sponsors have tremendous influence in the lives of their students and often provide one of the most significant relationships for a student. These video resources can help make all school leaders more effective in achieving the primary goal of education-based activity participation: Helping their students grow and develop into healthy adults.
Mental Health Matters Series
Part 1: Background and the Coach’s Role
Part 2: Student Perspective
Part 3: Depression
Part 4: Anxiety
Part 5: Establishing a Mental Health Support Plan
Note: These videos were produced and edited by Tyler Parucki, (Class of 2022), a student at the Topeka Center for Advanced Learning and Careers (TCALC), USD #501, Topeka Public Schools.