Badin hires first mental health counselor to help students cope with COVID-19

For the first time in its 55-year-history Badin High School have hired a full-time mental health counselor to its staff. The private Hamilton school made the recent move, say school officials, to offer more resources to its students as they cope with the pressures brought on by the coronavirus. (File Photo\Journal-News)

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For the first time in its 55-year-history Badin High School have hired a full-time mental health counselor to its staff. The private Hamilton school made the recent move, say school officials, to offer more resources to its students as they cope with the pressures brought on by the coronavirus. (File Photo\Journal-News)

Badin High School has added a full-time mental health counselor for the first time in its history to help students with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The move will help students at private Hamilton high school cope with some of the historic stresses of attending classes under the shadow of the virus as the coming school year opens later this month, said school officials.

The new 2021-22 school year will be the third consecutive school year with all or a portion of the calendar conducted during the pandemic since its onset in March 2020.

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“Students are under more stress and pressure than ever before,” Badin High Principal Brian Pendergest said. “The pandemic has made the demand for mental health services that much greater.

“We have had these conversations through many meetings over the past couple of years. Adding a mental health professional is a valuable solution for us.

Badin’s first mental health counselor, Lauren Rosenberger, is a 2005 alumna of the 55-year school, which is the only Catholic high school in Butler Counter. She is affiliated with Catalyst Counseling, which specializes in mental health services in a school setting, said school officials.

“Helping students grow in all aspects of their lives is critical,” Rosenberger said. “We want them to become their best selves. Providing them with the tools they need to move forward is what we’re able to do.”

Badin officials said Rosenberger is well qualified after more than a decade in the profession. She has undergraduate and master’s degrees in Social Work from the University of Cincinnati, and also earned a Master of Business Administration from Indiana Wesleyan.

“I had a great experience at Badin High School and look forward to helping others have a similarly memorable experience,” Rosenberger said.

The school’s move to further address the mental health of students is the latest example of the region’s vastly expanded emphasis among both private and public schools to contract with mental health counseling services. The additional staffing and contracted assistance is designed to help students and school staffers better handle the sometimes extraordinary emotional pressures brought on by the coronavirus.

In 2018, Badin began to use the school’s first therapy dog to help its students.

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Badin, which enrolls about 600 students who come from throughout the county and beyond, is scheduled to begin the new school year on Aug. 19.

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