California Parents Despair over Mental-Health Toll of School Closures: ‘It’s Criminal’

Open school rally in San Diego, Calif. (Scott Davison, director of legislative affairs for the Parent Association of North County San Diego.)

She saw the emptiness in her 13-year-old son’s face, a blank expression void of personality.

On that Thursday in early December, she immediately knew something was wrong. And he told her as much: he had been thinking of suicide. All day. Over and over and over.

She didn’t know what to do, so she called 911. She was directed to a San Diego-area emergency room. During intake, a doctor asked her son if he had a plan to kill himself. He did.

“He was going to take a toaster into a bathtub full of water and end his life,” said the boy’s mother,

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Ryan Mills is an enterprise and media reporter at National Review. He previously worked for 14 years as a breaking news reporter, investigative reporter, and editor at newspapers in Florida. Originally from Minnesota, Ryan lives in the Fort Myers area with his wife and two sons.


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