District 518 seeks mental health care for students, safety options for ‘Armageddon Corner’ and Crailsheim Road – The Globe


WORTHINGTON — District 518 is strengthening mental health care for students, the District 518 School Board’s instructional committee learned Monday.

“What we’ve noticed, or I often hear, is that there are a number of anxious students,” Superintendent John Landgaard said.

Last year, the district reached an agreement with a mental health professional to spend about 12 hours a week at Worthington High School and five hours between The Learning Center and Worthington Middle School. This year, those hours will be increased to approximately 23 hours per week.

Landgaard also hopes another professional will work one day a week at the learning center in the future.

“The way it works is these people will meet the student two, three, four times. If they continue, we will switch them to private insurance,” Landgaard said. “So we pay for the first meetings with appointments, and then at that point they’ll switch to private insurance, if there’s a long-term need for that student.”

Originally, a high school counselor, social workers and school psychologists came to Landgaard with concerns about student mental health – which has been prevalent in the United States following the COVID-19 pandemic – and the suggestion to call on an outside professional to complete the existing team.

The cost of additional mental health assistance will be covered by the school’s federal elementary and secondary emergency relief funding, Landgaard said.

The committee also asked the school administration to consider having crossing guards near the middle school and learning center, which are located along Crailsheim Road, and again expressed frustration with the ministry. of Minnesota Transportation.

“I think we need to at least consider the possibility of having (crossing guards) there,” school board member Brad Shaffer said, saying he thought the road near the middle school might be as dangerous as “Armageddon Corner by the Middle School”, referring to the intersection of Crailsheim with Oxford Street.

In response to city and county concerns about student safety along the Crailsheim Road corridor, the MnDOT conducted a traffic study earlier this summer, before the start of the school year.

The study found that the speed limit on Crailsheim Road should be changed to 45 miles per hour, rather than 40 mph from Oxford Street 1,200 feet south of College Way and 55 away in Minnesota 60 – a result which Worthington City Council and Nobles County Council found insufficient.

Both governing bodies drafted resolutions asking the MnDOT to revisit the hallway, this time on a school day.

According to Landgaard, District 518 is working on a similar resolution that would be brought to the school board for approval at its next meeting at 6:15 p.m. on September 20.

The committee also asked administrators to find out about the rules governing the Crailsheim corridor, particularly with regard to school zones and whether they could be used to reduce speeds near schools in the presence of pupils.

In other news Monday, the committee:

  • I heard that a donor was considering donating money to the school for a legacy wall at Trojan Field, where other donors could be recognized through the purchase of bricks or paving stones, the money coming from donations going to extracurricular activities.
  • Learned District 518 is working to restart an online program, following the abrupt shutdown of its VIBE program this summer.
  • Received an update on enrollment, which is up slightly from last year, with 722 students at Prairie Elementary, 663 at Middle School, 671 at WMS, 1,165 at WHS and 125 at The Learning Center . As it’s sized for 1,000 students, Landgaard said, WHS is “a little overcrowded at this point.”
  • Discussed District 518’s upcoming accreditation process.

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