Gov. Mike DeWine (R-Ohio) is doubling down on his commitment to renew education funding for student wellness programs saying these services can play a vital role in a student's education.
The two-year state budget sent $675 million to Ohio's school districts for mentoring, mental health treatment, and other wraparound services that address student issues outside of the classroom.
DeWine says these programs are helpful for the students and the teachers who have faced obstacles and challenges in the classroom with students who are distracted by outside factors.
"What teachers say is 'look I can teach, kids can learn, but it's what goes on outside the classroom room, it's what goes on outside the school building, and what sometimes does not go on,'" DeWine says.
The governor told a crowd of about 1,400 educators about his mission to renew the fund during a summit on mental health and social-emotional learning in Columbus. He says the extra funding for schools becomes a long-term investment in students, in order to help them reach their full potential.
"We have to try help these kids, whether it's with mental health whether it is with mentoring, whatever it is that's going on in that student's life we've got to be able to help so we want to give these schools the ability to partner with other people in the community to do these things," says DeWine.
DeWine plans to put the same amount in his second budget next year, if not more.
Reports on how schools used the money are expected later this year.