Counseling and Wellness

Counseling and Wellness

Mental health matters. 1 in 5 people will experience a mental illness during their lifetime, and everyone faces challenges in life that can impact their mental health. To help support the mental health of yourself, your children and your community, it’s important to consider all aspects of a child’s life, from their academics to their hobbies to their social and emotional skills. By supporting the whole child, teachers and parents provide the support necessary for children to thrive.

PTA is committed to supporting families on their journey to make mental health a priority by providing tools and resources to empower families to take action:

  • Adult role models play an important role in promoting protective factors in children, such as resiliency and connectedness.
  • It is important to provide opportunities for your child to express their feelings in a safe environment.
  • Grief and depression are two different states of mind; grief is a typical response to loss, while depression is marked by specific, more chronic symptoms such as pervasive sadness or anxiety, loss of interest in previous activities, feelings of hopelessness, etc.
  • How children respond is unique to their developmental stage as well as their life experience.
  • If you’re concerned about your child’s well being, please reach out to your school counselor, the Gunn Wellness Center or a healthcare provider.
  • We remain dedicated partners in increasing the health and well being of our children and community.

Here are some resources to help support student(s) and families:

  • 24/7 Crisis Text Line: text HELLO to 741741 Text from anywhere in the USA to text with a trained Crisis Counselor. Every texter is connected with a Crisis Counselor, a real-life human being trained to bring texters from a hot moment to a cool calm through active listening and collaborative problem solving. All of these Crisis Counselors are volunteers, donating their time to helping people in crisis.
  • Call 988 for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. For Americans in crisis to connect with suicide prevention and mental health crisis counselors, anytime day or night.
  • Contact information for local, Community Resources for healing and self-care support and counseling.
  • Grief Support: Kara’s guiding values are empathy and compassion. They provide caring support to children and adults affected by loss and grief.
  • Title IX: PAUSD policies and procedures for reporting discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying. PACER’s Teens Against Bullying Website with information so that all youth are safe and supported in their schools, communities, and online.
  • Tobacco and E-Cigarette Prevention: “Vaping is the new smoking, and millions of young people are becoming addicted to nicotine through the use of e-cigarettes and the marketing of these products specifically to them,” said Celia Jaffe, President of California State PTA…[CAPTA commits] to educate members of its school communities about the ill health effects and addictive nature of e-cigarettes, and to support legislation, regulations and actions.
  • Social Emotional Learning: Gunn’s SELF Program aims to develop students’ empathy, resilience and other core social-emotional skills; help students build trusting relationships with their peers and mentors; and establish spaces where they feel safe and supported. SEL is valued by PTA and addresses CASEL’s core competencies: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making.
  • Developmental Relationships: Help adults to build connections with youth. Here are five elements—expressed in 20 specific actions—that make relationships powerful in young people’s lives. YCS (Youth Community Service) also helps students build leadership and life skills, gain empathy for others, and build a sense of connectedness, purpose and efficacy while making a positive difference in the lives of others.
  • allcove center welcomes young people ages 12 to 25 with mild to moderate needs looking for social support, education, counseling, or just a quiet space to to read, study, paint or journal.
  • Project Safety Net mobilizes community support and resources in Palo Alto for youth suicide prevention and mental wellness.  We are a coalition working on community education, outreach, and training; access to quality youth mental health services; policy advocacy and youth empowerment.
  • Gunn High School Counseling seeks to positively impact the lives of all our students by partnering with staff, parents, and the community. Our program offers comprehensive planning and guidance services addressing student academic, diverse career and college goals, as well as personal and social development. PAUSD strives to produce high-achieving learners who graduate college, are career-ready, and well-prepared to meet the challenges and high expectations of a diverse and changing world.
  • Gunn Wellness Center provides free and confidential mental health services and crisis counseling. They are located on the second floor of the P-building on campus for drop-in or appointments, or online through the Virtual Wellness Center.