CENTER LINE — When Center Line High School students return to school this fall, they will have a new place to go should they need any mental health assistance.
Construction is set to begin on a new mental health clinic, which Ascension Southeast Michigan Community Health will operate.
“The clinic at this time will be for mental health services only,” Sue Pauling, assistant to Superintendent Eve Kaltz, stated in an email. “We hope to eventually expand it with additional grant funding to cover medical needs as well. Mental health has become a concern for society at large and our students specifically. It is difficult for our school mental health staff to be able to supply all of the support our students desperately need; hence, our affiliation with Ascension is a godsend.”
The clinic will be located in the high school and at first will primarily support those students, but all students in the district will eventually have access to the clinic.
“The clinic will take insurance information, but no family will ever receive a bill for services their children receive,” said Pauling, who is also the district’s communications director.
According to CLHS Principal Andrea Szabo, the new mental health clinic will be built inside a former classroom in the southeast corner of the building.
“We’re going to start with one mental health professional, who will be on board for the start of the year,” Szabo said. “It will also house a nurse practitioner.”
The new clinic will have a bed, medical equipment and a waiting room.
“It will provide for students, not only in the building, but in the district, to receive medical care they might not get,” Szabo said. “I think many of our students don’t have immediate access to medical care. If they’re not feeling well, this will give them the opportunity to get the help they need.”
Center Line Public Schools received a grant for the construction of the mental health clinic. Attempts to learn how much the grant amount was were unsuccessful.
In November 2017, the district’s voters approved a $53.95 million bond issue for upgrades across the district at all the school buildings.
“The bond work for the auditorium is going on,” Szabo said of what is being conducted this summer at the high school. “We’re upgrading lighting and sound. We’re getting the roof over the J Hall gym area fixed. These are the things that are going on right now. The plan is to be ready when school starts.”