Franken: Schools need more mental health counselors

U.S. Sen. Al Franken
U.S. Sen. Al Franken on Dec. 12, 2014
Brett Neely / MPR News

U.S. Sen. Al Franken says a new federal education bill needs to require schools to have more mental health counselors.

Congress is in the process of re-writing President George W. Bush's signature education legislation known as No Child Left Behind. Schools have not been able to properly address students' mental health issues, Franken said on MPR News with Tom Weber.

"In Minnesota, we're like third from the bottom on counselors," Franken said. "We have over 700 kids per counselor, which is not good."

The House version of the education bill passed with only Republican votes, but the Senate version passed with a bi-partisan super majority. Franken says mental health will be a priority when Congress comes together to discuss a combined bill.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story reported a statement by Franken out of context. The statement has been removed from this version.

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