Students struggling with mental health issues are still in pandemic

Tutor Doctor Gateway & East Mesa, a tutoring organization, weighs in on the toll of the pandemic on students and ways to help.

MESA, Arizona – In nearly two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, the effects are still having a huge impact on children.

COVID and all learning curves have had a devastating effect on students inside and outside the classroom.

The American Psychological Association reports that mental disorders in children are at an all-time high. Team 12 spoke with a tutoring organization in the Valley about what families in Arizona can do to help their children.

“My biggest priority is getting students back on the path to success,” said Kim Rohr, vice president of the local Tutor Doctor that serves East Mesa and Queen Creek.

“We partner with schools to ensure that what we teach is transferable to what is taught in the classroom…We pride ourselves on looking at what the student is struggling with and what will build that intrinsic motivation in them.”

RELATED: Study: Impact of COVID on Arizona students deemed ‘significant and broad’

Tutor Doctor is a tutoring organization that currently works with approximately 65 one-on-one students. Rohr said about a year into the pandemic, more and more parents are in desperate need of help.

“When Arizona reopened, parents were very open about their kids being late.”

They needed help with their grades but also with their emotional well-being.

The American Psychological Association reports that 71% of parents said the pandemic had impacted their child’s mental health based on recent studies.

RELATED: Children are dying by suicide. These resources could help someone in need

“I’ve seen with my own eyes as a parent how the effects of upbringing can affect a child and present with mental illness,” Rohr said.

She said her daughter, who is now in sixth grade, suffers from anxiety.

“In addition to her anxiety occurring at pickup, homework was a huge struggle. She would have a complete meltdown.”

Other parents have called Tutor Doctor Gateway & East Mesa after noticing similar stresses in their children.

“I’ve spoken to many parents about their child’s experience. They say their anxiety rises, they cry more, it seems like a huge struggle at home.”

If this affects you, Rohr said the best thing to do is to ask for help.

“I generally recommend that parents start with school. Schools offer many different tools, some of which will be effective, but some children need more,” Rohr said.

“You can start by contacting the teacher directly…Many teachers also offer the possibility of redoing assignments because they recognize that they have a huge void to fill. Start there, defend your student, but if the child is further behind than that and needs more individualized support, that’s where Tutor Doctor can step in and really create that personalized learning experience for them.”

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