teacher mental health 051622CHICAGO – Teachers will be able to take excused mental health days under a measure supported by State Senator Christopher Belt that was signed into law Friday.

“It’s clear that our teachers have had to overcome a number of challenges, especially throughout the pandemic,” said Belt (D-Swansea). “They have continued to perform their jobs well in unprecedented times and often put their students before themselves.”

Belt serves as a chief-cosponsor of Senate Bill 3914, which requires the school board of each school district to include mental health as part of their current negotiated sick days for full time employees of the district. The new law allows teachers to use two of their days as mental health days, and that if a teacher needs three or more mental health days, the school district would require a note from a mental health professional.

“The mental health of teachers is vital for them to continue inspiring our youth,” Belt said. “They are a crucial part of children’s lives. Giving teachers time to focus on their mental health is essential to success.”

The law took effect immediately.