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Rep. Josh Gottheimer
Rep. Josh Gottheimer. (D-Wyckoff). (Photo: Kevin Sanders for the New Jersey Globe)

New bill would cover up to 50% of costs for students seeking graduate degrees in school psychology

By Nikita Biryukov, July 15 2021 10:32 am

A new federal bill would subsidize up to 50% of graduate school costs for students seeking degrees in school psychology in a bid to bridge a shortage of mental health professionals in schools.

“As our communities begin to rebound, this bipartisan bill will help ensure that we’re expanding access to school mental health services and addressing the drastic shortage of mental health professionals — so that students in North Jersey and nationwide can get the support they need,” said Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-Wyckoff), a sponsor.

The bill would require higher education institutions reach out to students who received Pell grants as undergraduates and those who attended certain universities.

Gottheimer is co-chair of the House Problem Solvers Caucus, a group of bipartisan House members seeking to break partisan gridlock in Washington.

“Ensuring students have access to mental health resources is vital to their current and future success, along with that of their peers,” said Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.), the bipartisan bill’s lead Republican sponsor. “Even in states with the greatest access to mental health services in America, over 38 percent of youth are not receiving the mental health services they need.”

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