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School Psych Corner: Closed Schools Are Creating More Trauma For Students

The high school senior sitting across from Franciene Sabens was in tears over the abrupt amputation of her social life and turmoil at home. Because of the coronavirus, there will be no prom, no traditional send-off or ceremony for the graduates of Carbondale Community High School in Carbondale, Ill. And Sabens, one of the school’s counselors, could not give the girl the one thing Sabens’ gut told her the teen needed most.

“I want to hug them all, but I really wanted to hug that one,” Sabens remembers. Instead of a desk between counselor and student, there were miles of Internet cable and a computer screen. No hug. No private office. This is Sabens’ new normal.

“Zoom is just not gonna ever bridge that gap,” she says. “That one was pretty rough.”

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