A recent letter regarding the dismissal of the school psychologist at the Fonda-Fultonville Central School District pointed out some tragedies, including what happened at Columbine, Sandy Hook and the shooting of U.S. Rep.?Giffords.
Prior to all those instances, it was cleary documented the perpetrators in those shootings were not stable people.
I'm not saying the position is not needed, mind you; it's helpful to have. That's all. Choices had to be made as far as budgets go.
My graduating class had more than 375 students, and kids fell through the cracks. Not the case with a small school where everyone knows everyone. What the big schools needed is not what the small schools enjoy: the ability to communicate. To mirror the big schools' concerns and adapt those concerns to small schools is idiotic.
Big schools do not enjoy the perks of being small, knowing your students and knowing the families on a personal level. I don't think cutting programs that help the normal kids (yes, even football) by catering to the one sick student is going to be helpful. If a kid comes to school armed to the teeth muttering the lyrics to a Black Sabbath song while dressed like a ninja, and a turf war is brewing between the "Umpa Lumpas" and the "Lolipop Tree Midgets" dancing in the kid's head, chances are that kid is out of a school psychologist's league anyway. Other than whistle and shake his head and document it, what's he supposed to do? Do we expect him to see this kid after hours, become a mentor? What's the pay scale for that?
If a kid seems questionable, call the parents or guardians. It's all the psychologist can do anyway without further parental consent.
It would be nice to have a school psychologist, no doubt, but at the expense of the 99 percent of the normal kids? I'd rather enhance the abilities of the normal, make them well rounded and purposeful of a cause greater them themselves, aware of those who have problems and alert to what may or may not happen.
Our students are our kids first. Help them help themselves, don't take away their ability to speak up when something is wrong.
We can't have a plan in place for every event.