Psychological prevention and treatment for students is the best way to head off school violence, mental health professionals told a panel of state lawmakers on July 18.
This was the third in a series of interim hearings for the Senate Select Committee on Violence in Schools & School Security, a panel named by Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick in response to the shooting at Santa Fe High School in May.
Dr. Andy Keller, president of the Meadows Foundation in Dallas, told panel members:
— It is a challenge to predict which students might turn into mass shooters;
— Some 2 million children and teenagers have been diagnosed with mental health disorders;
— Of those, perhaps 20,000 have a diagnosis associated with a slight increase in violent behavior; and
— Of the 20,000, fewer than 1,000 are considered high-risk for violent behavior.
Keller added that doesn’t mean those 1,000 children are more likely to commit a mass shooting.
Ed Sterling • Member services director for Texas Press Association