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The Student Assistance Program: Getting Help is Human

photo+illustration+by+Sarah+Meyer
photo illustration by Sarah Meyer

photo illustration by Sarah Meyer

Olivia Watson

Olivia Watson

photo illustration by Sarah Meyer

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In all truthfulness, senior year has been rough.

Like, really rough.

This year alone, I’ve had to deal with more problems than I have in my whole entire 18 years on this planet.

I felt like I hit rock bottom. And I’m still kind of recovering from it. I’ve always been an “I can help myself” kind of person, but my plate was getting too full.

Fortunately, some caring people at the school took notice and I was referred to our Student Assistance Program (SAP).

Now, unless you’re familiar with it, you probably just asked yourself, what is that?

That was my exact reaction.

SAP is a program that helps students find counseling, either in an individual or a group setting and they help students get connected to positive people and programs. They even give out scholarships.”

SAP is a program that helps students find counseling, either in an individual or a group setting, and they help students get connected to positive people and programs. They even give out scholarships.

This program has been around for years, and it took me until my senior year to finally figure out what it is and why it was implemented here at Tyrone.

English teacher Leah Deskevich, who has been involved in the program for over ten years now, said that students can be referred to the program for many different reasons including failing grades, changes in behavior, upsetting discoveries, troubling facts learned through conversations, essays, disciplinary referrals, parent contacts, social media, or drug and alcohol problems.

Even if you’ve never heard of SAP, behind the scenes, it’s been helping Tyrone students since 1984. According to SAP coordinator Rhonda Hocutt, so far this year, 82 high school students have already been referred for SAP services.

One benefit of the Student Assistance Program is that it offers students a chance to get help without repercussions. The SAP councilors can’t share what was said in the meetings for disciplinary actions because of their confidentiality agreement. So everything that is said to the counselor always remains confidential.  

I was very hesitant to get help because, like I said, I’m a very independent person and admitting I needed help was something I was not interested in. But I finally convinced myself that it was okay.

The program was implemented to help those in need. Not to punish.  If you, or someone you know, feels as if this might help, don’t be afraid to talk to a teacher, nurse or guidance counselor about being referred.

While doing research for this story, I referenced an old Eagle Eye article that I was going to use, but I couldn’t help but be a little put-off by the title, “SAP Offers Help for Troubled Students.”

That couldn’t be farther from the truth.

Just because you are receiving help for your problems does not mean you are “troubled.” It means you are strong and brave enough to admit that it is okay to need help sometimes.

It means you are human.

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About the Writer
Rayne Burger, Staff Writer

My name is Rayne and I'm a senior at TAHS. This is my first, and last, year being a part of the Eagle Eye staff. After I graduate, I plan on attending...

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