State law addresses mental and emotional health.
Code of Virginia 22.1-207. Physical and health education.
Physical and health education shall be emphasized throughout the public school curriculum by lessons, drills, and physical exercises, and all pupils in the public elementary, middle, and high schools shall receive as part of the educational program such health instruction and physical training as shall be prescribed by the Board of Education and approved by the State Board of Health. Such health instruction shall incorporate Standard that recognize the multiple dimensions of health by including mental health and the relationship of physical and mental health so as to enhance student understanding, attitudes, and behavior that promote health, well-being, and human dignity. Such health instruction may include an age-appropriate program of instruction on the safe use of and risks of abuse of prescription drugs that is consistent with curriculum guidelines developed by the Board and approved by the State Board of Health.
Code of Virginia 22.1-207.1. Family life education.
B.The Board of Education shall develop Standard of Learning and curriculum guidelines for a comprehensive, sequential family life education curriculum in grades kindergarten through 12. Such curriculum guidelines shall include instruction as appropriate for the age of the student in family living and community relationships; the benefits, challenges, responsibilities, and value of marriage for men, women, children, and communities; the value of family relationships; abstinence education; the value of postponing sexual activity; the benefits of adoption as a positive choice in the event of an unwanted pregnancy; human sexuality; human reproduction; dating violence, the characteristics of abusive relationships, steps to take to deter sexual assault, and the availability of counseling and legal resources, and, in the event of such sexual assault, the importance of immediate medical attention and advice, as well as the requirements of the law; the etiology, prevention, and effects of sexually transmitted diseases; and mental health education and awareness.
Virginia 2015 Health Standard of Learning - Grade Eight
Essential Health Concepts
q) Analyze the role of tolerance and resilience in coping with stress.
r) Explain the impact of failing to recognize issues related to emotional and mental health.
s) Explain why seeking help for mental health issues is important
Virginia 2015 Health Standard of Learning - Grade Seven
Advocacy and Health Promotion
q) Promote help-seeking for mental health concerns.
Virginia Administrative Code 8 VAC 20-320-10. Health Education Program.
Elementary and secondary schools shall present a comprehensive health education program which focuses on instruction related to alcohol and drug abuse, smoking and health, personal growth and personal health, nutrition, prevention and control of disease, physical fitness, accident prevention, personal and family survival, environmental health, mental health, and consumer education. These shall be developed in accordance with procedures outlined in the Curriculum Guide for Health Education.