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Gov. Beshear signs bill potentially allowing Ky. students access to days off for mental health

Gov. Beshear signs bill potentially allowing Ky. students access to days off for mental health
Published: Apr. 22, 2022 at 6:29 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 22, 2022 at 10:21 PM CDT
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KENTUCKY (WFIE) - With the signing of House Bill 44, Kentucky students could have access to mental health-related days off.

The bill was signed into law on Wednesday.

The new law states that it will allow public schools to provide children with excused absences for reasons involving their mental health or behavior.

River Valley Behavioral Health Licensed Psychological Associate Laura Day told 14 News that mental health days like this are going to be important for the overall health of kids and could even be used specifically for treatment appointments.

Day said she hopes this will allow kids to be more open to seeking help, as unexcused absences can leave kids discouraged.

“[Unexcused absences] can be counted against their progress, and you know with parents, it makes them not seek treatment when they need it,” she explained.

Day said it’s also important for parents and adults in the community to understand that kids need this, even if you feel you didn’t when you were that age.

“Yeah, you did,” Day said. “That’s what I would say. Deep down everyone knows that. Everyone needs mental health time.”

14 News has reached out to several Kentucky schools, but with the bill being signed so recently, they haven’t had time to create a plan for how to implement these days just yet.

We will update you as schools adjust their attendance policies in the coming months.

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