Student and Family Wellness
Our school district is committed to supporting students and families in healthy environments and with a culture that promotes and protects health and well-being. We are committed to providing opportunities for all students to reach their highest educational potential.
During the past year, we know many in our community have experienced an increase in social, emotional and financial stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During this time—and all of the time—the district's school social workers share these resources with you to help you and your family navigate challenges. We invite you to reach out to our team or school and program staff with any questions, concerns or a request for more support.
What We Do
We are a team of dedicated helping professionals who meet state requirements to practice in a variety of roles within our district’s school settings. We work to address any possible barriers to learning that may exist in the classroom, community or at home. We strive to understand students' social and emotional perspectives so that we may help them achieve academic and social success. We want to be the link that connects school, home and the community and to provide beneficial and supportive services to students, families and staff.
Our team may:
- Coordinate and facilitate student meetings to address mental wellness, social and emotional coping skills
- Provide student referrals to in-school or community therapy programs
- Find support for family basic needs
- Address barriers to students’ regular attendance at school
- Provide crisis intervention and support
- Bridge the gap between home, school and the community
Getting to Know TARA PROM
As Mississippi Heights school social worker Tara Prom considers what advice she may offer to students and families as they deal with challenges, asking them to reach out and talk to a supportive person is at the top of her list. “The past year has been full of change and uncertainty. This may feel really uncomfortable and people may feel anxious. It’s always helpful to talk to someone during these times.”
I love helping others! My passion is to make a difference in the lives of students and families, and the best part of my job is making connections and seeing students grow and change.
Facilitating Open Dialogue
Prom spends some of her time talking—and even more time listening—in her school social worker role and as a WatchDOGS coordinator at MHES. She is also the Unity Day coordinator for the entire Sauk Rapids-Rice School District. These roles allow her to facilitate environments of open dialogue among people. This work is not always easy but is essential in easing stress and helping people feel heard and is a fulfilling part of her job.
“In families, each person should be able to talk about their feelings. And the adults need to make sure adult problems are just that—challenges for the adults—so kids don’t end up feeling overwhelmed.”
An Extensive Background
Her extensive education and experience are supportive of this kind of work. Prom has a bachelor’s degree in social work from the College of Saint Benedict and a master’s degree in social work from St. Cloud State University. She has extensive training chemical dependency, children’s mental health and trauma.
Before her position in the Sauk Rapids-Rice School District, Prom worked at St. Cloud Children’s Home as a youth counselor, at Effective Living Center as a chemical dependency counselor, at Lutheran Social Service as a therapist and in the Royalton School District as a school social worker. In addition, she serves on the Minnesota School Social Workers Association board.
In her free time, Prom enjoys watching sports, crafting and spending time with her many family and friends who live in the area. Prom was born and raised in St. Cloud. She attended St. Mary’s Cathedral in elementary school and Apollo High School. She is a proud, lifelong central Minnesota resident and is happy to be raising her two sons here. Her three brothers and their families and her parents also live in the area.
Prom is happy when students and families reach out to her for help. “I love helping others! My passion is to make a difference in the lives of students and families, and the best part of my job is making connections and seeing students grow and change.”
Meet Your Wellness Team
Benton County Community Services: 800-530-6254
Stearns County Community Services: 800-450-3663
Central Minnesota Mental Health Center
Child Anxiety Network
Minnesota Mental Health
Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota
Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health
National Child Traumatic Stress Network
St. Cloud State University LGBTQ Resource Center