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State officials announce $120 million in behavioral aid for K-12 students

Posted at 5:57 PM, Sep 19, 2023

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Suicide rates for teenage boys have doubled.

They've tripled for girls.

Now, Maryland schools can get more money to help.

"The $120 million in new grant funding we're highlighting today is the first step in our efforts to expand access to high quality mental health and wraparound services outside of the school and inside of the school, for students in their families across our state," said Delegate Eric Ebersole of Baltimore & Howard County, District 12.

State officials called the $120 million investment historic, adding it's critical to Maryland's 900,000 school children.

Members say grants could serve several purposes.

"It could be funding for counselors, it could be funding for education, for screening, It could be funding for other services that are not necessarily specific to counseling. For instance, there is a screening tool called Aces and we know that kids that score more that four or more are at an increased risk for depression and anxiety," said Secretary of Health Dr. Laura Herrera Scott.

Grants can be applied for now with money handed out starting in December.