Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Education issued a press release announcing they will host a new virtual summit — Recovery to Thriving: Supporting Mental Health & Students with Disabilities. The purpose of the summit is to teach schools and the community how to properly provide support to students with mental health and other disabilities.
The summit, which is scheduled to start at 12:30 p.m. on Monday, May 23, ”will bring together education leaders, disability advocates and coordinators, special education professionals, and others to discuss issues affecting students with disabilities and students with mental health needs as our nation continues to emerge from the pandemic,” according to the press release.
U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said the pandemic was especially hard on the students with disabilities, worsening challenges that already contributed to inequities between them and their peers.
“Ensuring that our students with disabilities receive a free, appropriate public education that meets their academic, social, and emotional needs isn’t just written into law, it’s a moral obligation. We must work together so that students with disabilities and mental health needs receive the resources they need to thrive. This summit will highlight promising practices in this important work, demonstrate the Department’s continued commitment to serving our students with special needs, and provide schools with the tools to reimagine education and ensure all students succeed,” said Cardona in the press release.
The Department of Education will discuss five main topics in panels throughout the summit:
- how to use the American Rescue Plan to supply mental health needs in schools K-12
- how to use the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund to offer more accessible mental health assistance to students in higher education
- helping better transition into the career world from school for students with disabilities
- adapting to the digital world for school and work
- updates and announcements from the Department of Education