Photo Release

January 31, 2023

Promoting mental health in schools: Sen. Win Gatchalian presides over the Committee on Basic Education's public hearing on Senate Bill No. (SBN) 379, or the proposed "Basic Education Mental Health and Well-Being Promotion Act" on Tuesday, January 31, 2023. Explaining the bill, Gatchalian cited the lack of understanding of Filipinos on mental health issues, especially among children. He noted how the problem became "more pronounced" during the COVID-19 pandemic, recalling school closures of almost two years. Despite this, Gatchalian said mental health problems are still downplayed rather than addressed. "That goes to show that a lot of our constituents have a shallow understanding of this disease plaguing our country," Gatchalian observed. SBN 379 proposes to institutionalize mental health and well-being programs and open positions for health professionals and guidance counselors in public and private basic education schools in the Philippines. (Voltaire F. Domingo/Senate PRIB)