Schools are crucial assets at the center of our communities, and as trusted institutions they can serve as physical hubs for connectedlearning.network and communitytelehealth.org, combining local support with global resources via secure dedicated connection.Literacy and health literacy must be co-equal predicates to learning and wellbeing.
Students should spend as little time as possible out of school for sickness or traveling to doctors’ offices. Primary care via Telehealth can forestall communicable disease outbreaks.
Similarly, behavioral health services delivered remotely can make all the difference when the possibility of harm to oneself or others presents itself in a school setting. Teachers can’t be expected to also serve as mental health professionals. Nor can all schools afford to have one on staff. Reliable distributed remote access is key.
Suicide was the third leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 14, and the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 15 and 34. Time and again, we’ve seen ample evidence that the need for mental health services in our schools is acute.
All health professionals begin their careers wanting to do what the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker have always done: make a living by serving the community. The same is true for teachers. Often this happens under a crushing weight of student debt. So much enthusiasm and energy is lost in the urgent grind of time exchanged for money.
The teaching profession is extremely stressful. Educator burnout is epidemic and is the direct cause of some depressing statistics. Fifty-five percent of U.S. teachers report their morale was low and declining (National Union of Teachers, 2013). Forty to fifty percent of new teachers leave the profession in the first five years (Ingersoll, 2012).
CTC intends to have a positive, measurable impact in reducing these numbers by facilitating resources that aren’t currently available despite the clear need.
Libraries touch virtually everyone in their communities across the entire economic spectrum. Traditionally, people visited Public Libraries to check out books and materials and access information. However, during the past 25 years many communities’ needs shifted to include information about and access to a wider range of information and social services.
Libraries are crucial assets at the center of our communities, and as trusted institutions they can serve as physical hubs for connectedlearning and communitytelehealth, combining local support with global resources. Literacy and health literacy must be co-equal predicates to learning and wellbeing.
Many of a community’s most needy residents spend their days in the Library. Some bring their questions about and need for social services directly to librarians, and others say little. But their need is apparent to the library staff they get to know and trust through daily interaction.
While friendly and committed librarians offer a wealth of information, they’re simply not trained in the provision of social services, primary healthcare or chronic disease management.
Libraries help residents – including those with limited incomes and educations – find jobs, obtain health information, and connect to government services and benefits. They’re fulfilling what is sometimes called their “shadow mandate”, supporting and complementing the work of other public agencies.
Where libraries are in need of social workers and other health professionals, CTC can facilitate a more flexible, dynamic approach, and intends to do so without extracting Library resources.