SPAN The Bridge Newsletter pictorial graphic.  Your weekly access to SPAN news, resources and events.

May 31, 2023 | Issue 81 (View newsletter as webpage) Para leer este boletín en Español, haga clic aquí

Important News

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Surgeon General Issues Advisory on Harm Social Media Can Have on Youth Mental Health

Social media can profoundly harm the mental health of youth, particularly adolescent girls, the U.S. Surgeon General warned in an advisory on May 23, and he called for safeguards from tech companies for children who are at critical stages of brain development.

Social media use may cause and perpetuate body image issues, affect eating behaviors and sleep quality, and lead to social comparison and low self-esteem, especially among adolescent girls, the advisory said, citing responses from a survey conducted among adolescents.

Adolescents who spend more than three hours per day on social media face double the risk of experiencing poor mental health outcomes, such as symptoms of depression and anxiety, according to the advisory.

For more on the advisory, including what policymakers and tech companies should do, click here.

For resources on youth mental health from SPAN and the Federation of Families, click here.


National Maternal Mental Health Hotline logo

Celebrating the National Maternal Mental Health Hotline’s First Anniversary: Introducing Updated Number:


SPAN celebrates the first anniversary earlier this month of the National Maternal Mental Health Hotline! 

Since its launch, the Hotline’s professional counselors have provided emotional support, resources, and referrals to pregnant and postpartum individuals who struggle with mental health concerns and their loved ones. They have an updated, toll-free, easy-to-remember number: 1-833-TLC-MAMA (1-833-852-6262). If you or someone you know is a new or expecting parent who is struggling and in need of emotional support or resources, call or text now. The Hotline can be reached 24/7.Guide to Medicaid" from ASAN.

For more on the hotline and its anniversary, click here.

Discipline Discussions: Suspension, Expulsion & Informal Removals: Unexpected Realities in Preschool


In her latest Discipline and Behavior Series blog, NJ DOE, Office of Special Education Programs Director, Valerie C. Williams explains that suspensions, expulsions and other forms of exclusionary discipline continue to create stressful and isolating experiences for a disproportionate number of Black preschoolers and preschoolers with disabilities. This, a full decade after the U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services called for the prevention, severe limitation and ultimate elimination of expulsions and suspensions in early childhood settings.

Additionally, the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) is concerned with informal removals and shortened school days, practices in which a child is removed by school personnel for part or all of a school day, or even an indefinite period of time, in response to the child’s behavior. 

To read Valerie's latest blog, click here.

For early childhood resources from SPAN, click here.

Upcoming Events

SPAN offers a variety of learning opportunities for families and the professionals who work with them.

Highlighted Event This Week

START How to Make Summer Reading Fun workshop flyer.

"Let's Read Together" Literacy Series Presents: Sand, Sun and Stories: How to Make Summer Reading Fun!

June 1, 2023 via Zoom

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM ET


7:00PM - 8:00 PM ET

Please join the START EPSD Literacy Strategies for Families on Thursday, June 1st for "Sand, Sun, and Stories: How to Make Summer Reading Fun!"  

In this workshop, families will learn simple, effective strategies they can do at home to prevent the "summer slide" while making reading together fun and engaging.

Our presenter will be Dr. Jamie Zibulsky, co-author of "Book Smart: How to Support Successful, Motivated Readers."

To register, click here.

See all of SPAN's upcoming events with details and registration links here 

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Youth in the Know

Read our latest blog post, "Youth in the Know," to explore SPAN's youth-focused resource webpage on employment, health, and more.

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