The Garland ISD board of trustees intensely debated the approval of a contract award to Care Solace to provide care coordination and a mental health platform to the district.
The contract was discussed during the Tuesday, Nov. 29, regular meeting after being discussed in committee in mid-November.
Care Solace presented a bid to assume responsibility for coordinating access to care for patients with a mental illness by connecting them with licensed care professionals that are needed. According to data provided by the company, it can take over 50 calls to get connected with a mental healthcare service and 80% of individuals never receive the care they need.
In the company’s presentation, it claimed that it can connect individuals with needed services within 120 hours.
Tiffany Gilmore, director of guidance and counseling, said the connected database would allow the district to cast a wider net and identify vetted resources that can assist them. The database used by Care Solace is updated every three months, she added.
The company’s connection will also tackle the language barrier that currently exists with current counseling staff, said Gilmore, which are not always able to communicate with students in their first language.
Trustee Daphne Stanley said she was unsure about some of the claims made by the company would actually be delivered.
“Having dealt with mental illness my entire life, the wrong solution can be just as damaging as no treatment,” Stanley said. “I have done a lot of research and it bothers me that the history of these companies is nothing more than collecting a lot of money on the table from school boards. It is not a solution, just a thing to make us feel good.”
For the full story, see the Dec. 8 issue of The Sachse News.