Emotional and mental well-being are integral to overall health

Physical health and mental health are closely related. This indicator  measures the percent of students in 7th, 9th, and 11th grade that have constant feelings of sadness or hopelessness, with the aim of reducing their frequency. Supporting positive mental health for young people is one critical element preparing them for healthy lives.2

Frequency of Sad or Hopeless Feelings in Youth (7th Graders)

In 2008-2010 (baseline period), 28.0% of 7th graders had constant feelings of sadness or hopelessness. The most recent data available show 24.2% (2015-2017). We hope to reach a target of 25.0% or lower by 2022.

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More Data

Baseline

28.0%

Current Rate

24.2%

Target

25.0%

Frequency of Sad or Hopeless Feelings in Youth (9th Graders)

In 2008-2010 (baseline period), 31.0% of 9th graders had constant feelings of sadness or hopelessness. The most recent data available show 29.6% (2015-2017). We hope to reach a target of 24.0% or lower by 2022.

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More Data

Baseline

31.0%

Current Rate

29.6%

Target

24.0%

Frequency of Sad or Hopeless Feelings in Youth (11th Graders)

In 2008-2010 (baseline period), 32.0% of 11th graders had constant feelings of sadness or hopelessness. The most recent data available show 32.3% (2015-2017). We hope to reach a target of 27.0% or lower by 2022.

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More Data

Baseline

32.0%

Current Rate

32.3%

Target

27.0%

Indicator Highlights

two young women hugging

California Reducing Disparities Project – Phase 1

Focuses on developing strategies to transform the public mental health system and identifying community-based promising practices in each of the five targeted populations. Read More »

In 2013, 30% of high school students nationwide reported persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness.2

Studies estimate that each year

  • Up to one in five US children experience a mental disorder.2
  • About $247 billion is spent on children’s mental health problems.2

Unfortunately, the majority of children who need mental health treatment do not receive it, and mental health problems in childhood often have effects into adulthood.2

Data Snapshot: Disparities & Trends

Frequency of sad or hopeless feelings tends to increase by grade.2

Female students report a higher frequency of sad or hopeless feelings.2

Frequency of Sad or Hopeless Feelings in Students Within the Past Year, by Demographic Category


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Frequency of Sad or Hopeless Feelings in Students Within the Past Year, by County


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Indicator: Percent of students reporting sad or hopeless feelings (7th, 9th, and 11th grades)

Description: Percentage of public school students in grades 7, 9, 11, and non-traditional* students reporting whether in the past 12 months they had felt so sad or hopeless almost every day for two weeks or more that they stopped doing some usual activities.

Data Limitations: Targets were set using gender disparities since racial/ethnic disparities are not available by grade level. Racial/ethnic and level of connectedness to school data is available when the pool of students includes non-traditional students. From kidsdata.org: “Non-Traditional students are those enrolled in Community Day Schools or Continuation Education; according to Ed-Data, these schools make up about 10% of all public schools in California. N/A indicates that the survey was not administered in that period or that data are not available for that group. LNE (Low Number Event) indicates that for a specific answer there were fewer than 25 respondents. N/R indicates that the sample is too small to be representative.”

Indicator Source: California Healthy Kids Survey (County-level weighted proportions); California Student Survey (State-level weighted proportions). Both of these surveys are affiliated with WestEd (www.wested.org). The query is powered by kidsdata.org.

Indicator Calculation Methodology: The 2011-2013 time period reflects data from school years 2011-12 and 2012-13. District and county level figures are weighted proportions from the 2011-13 California Healthy Kids Survey, and state level figures are weighted proportions from the 2011-13 California Student Survey.

Data Collection Methodology: http://chks.wested.org

Program URL Link: http://www.kidsdata.org/topic/68/youth-emotional-health/summary

Geographic Granularity: County

Data categorized by:

Race/ethnicity: African American/Black, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, Hispanic/Latino, Multiracial, Other, Native American/Pacific Islander, White (for all adolescents, but not by grade 7, 9, and 11)
Sex: Female, Male (for grades 7, 9, and 11 only)

Other demographic: Grade level: 7th Grade, 9th Grade, 11th Grade, Non-Traditional; Level of Connectedness to School: High, Medium, Low (The level of school connectedness is based on a scale created from student responses to 5 survey questions. See the guidebooks for the “Core” or “Resilience and Youth Development” survey modules at http://chks.wested.org/about for more information.)

Reporting Cycle: Every 2 Years

Reporting Lag: 2011-2013; 2 Years

National Benchmark Indicator: (not available)

Tags (Keywords): Depression, mental health, emotional health, depression-related feelings, sad or hopeless feelings, adolescents, 7th grade, 9th grade, 11th grade

1. Office of Health Equity. (August 2015). Portrait of Promise: California Statewide Plan to Promote Health Equity and Mental Health Equity . California Department of Public Health. Weblink: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/Documents/CDPHOHEDisparityReportAug2015.pdf

2. Emotional/Mental Health Summary. (2015). Retrieved November 17, 2015, from www.kidsdata.org: http://www.kidsdata.org/topic/68/emotionalmental-health/summary

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