Fox 11 Schools across Wisconsin receive ‘Get Kids Ahead’ funds to improve mental health services

By Ashley Kaster

April 6th, 2022

(WLUK) — Nearly every school district in Wisconsin is receiving funds from the state to provide school-based mental health.

The $15 million comes from Gov. Tony Evers’ “Get Kids Ahead” initiative, announced during his 2022 State of the State address.

Schools and more than 450 local education agencies, will be able to use the funds to provide direct mental healthcare, hire and support mental health navigators, provide mental health first aid and trauma-based care training, or provide family assistance programs.

“We know that long before the pandemic hit, kids across our state were already facing immense challenges with their mental health, but as parents and educators are seeing firsthand, these challenges have only been made worse by the isolating and traumatic events of the past two years,” said Gov. Evers. “These funds will go directly towards whatever mental health support and services our kids need so they can be successful both in and out of the classroom to help them grow, learn, and get ahead.”

Every public school district in the state was eligible to opt in to receive these funds and was guaranteed to receive a minimum of $10,000. The remainder of the funds were allocated on a per-pupil basis.

Additionally, last week, Gov. Evers announced a $5 million investment to make telehealth services, including mental and behavioral health services, more accessible.