New mental health workshops to help Lehigh Valley educators with COVID-related stress

Written by on December 16, 2020

The United Way of the Great Lehigh Valley offering workshops for educators to deal with the stresses of remote learning

By Tyler Pratt

December 16, 2020

Photo | Beth LaBerge / KQED via NPR

Lehigh Valley students, parents and teachers may be looking forward to a holiday break from the stresses of remote learning. One local group is working to offer resources for educators to support mental health in the school communities moving forward.

Listen to the story.

Schools have had to radically change the way they do everything this year. Beth Tomlinson heads up education programs with The United Way of the greater Lehigh Valley – she says as a result, everyone’s overwhelmed.

“We’re seeing the toll – both on the teacher stress level and the student stress levels.”

Tomlinson says part of the strain on educators is that students are acting differently. Kids aren’t engaged during virtual class. And on in-person days – teachers say some students are sluggish and distracted. 

“They are seeing behaviours in students that pre-COVID they had not seen before. They are struggling to understand the behavior and respond to the behavior. 

Tomlinson says students and teachers are traumatized from this year. The United Way is now offering free workshops for educators with mental health experts to help address the trauma. Teachers from across the valley can ask questions, commiserate and get some advice on new approaches to try in 2021. 

The final workshop of the year, for secondary-level educators, will be Thursday at three in the afternoon. More sessions are being planned for January of 2021. 

Register for class HERE.

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