School Based Health Centers grow while academic performance drops

School Based Health Centers grow while academic performance drops

In 2021, HB 1225, to support “School Based Health Clinics” (SBHC). One of the stated goals of the bill was to improve student academic performance. Interestingly, when this bill was passed in 2021 students in Washington state were still doing school remotely due to Covid lockdowns. Perhaps in person learning should have been prioritized over SBHC.

HB 1225 would provide state funded grants to schools around the state. In 2021 over $750,000 was granted and in 2022 more than $1.3 million. SBHCs are located in or near a school and provide integrated medical, behavioral, and other health care services such as dental care. Today, there are 70 SBHCs around the state of Washington and more than 25 companies providing services to students. 

The push to increase SBHC in Washington is a big priority for legislators, bureaucrats and special interest groups – particularly the medical industrial complex. In a work session meeting for the Washington House Health Care & Wellness Committee on October 16th, legislators will hear from a number of state agencies making the case for increased funding for SBHC. Let’s take a look at some of the content being shared with the legislators in this meeting and why it’s concerning.

Of course, all children should have their medical and mental health needs met. The integration of these services IN schools, however, is not the right place. These services are not just for students in need, they’re for students in “want.” In Washington this could include “gender questioning” or a young lady who wants to get an abortion. These services can and will be provided through the school, often times without parental consent or notification. With the strong push by Washington elected democrats for both “transgender” care and abortion, this is very concerning for caring parents who want to be involved in their child’s mental and medical healthcare decisions.

SBHC services

As you can see by the graph below, the number of SBHCs in Washington has nearly tripled in the last 10 years. They say these SBHCs are needed to promote academic success, however, state test scores show that Washington students have fallen much farther behind than they were in 2013.

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According to Liv Finne at Washington Policy Center, “schools failed to meet the standard in teaching math – 70% of students failed – and failed to meet the standard in teaching English – 52% of students failed.” This isn’t surprising considering the strong emphasis on Social Emotional Learning (SEL), Critical Race Theory (CRT), gender ideology and other non-academic issues that have been integrated into every subject. The data is clear that Washington public schools are failing our students.

How are these SBHCs being funded? WA spends over $18,000 per student on public education. That’s over $4,000 more than the national average. We are not seeing a return on investment. Students are not only falling behind academically, but the youth mental health crisis continues to skyrocket.

As you can see in the slide below, prepared by the Washington School-Based Health Alliance, the funding for SBHCs are primarily coming from taxpayers through various means. “State funding” and Medicaid are both taxpayer sources.

WA SBHC funding

While the SBHCs are “serving more young people statewide”, we are not seeing the results we would expect to see. The number of students served, the number of SBHCs and the number of dollars being spent are not yielding positive results in our students. A 200+% increase in students served should show a direct correlation in the mental health of our students and we should start to see an improvement in academic performance. We are not.

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These services are “integrated and embedded into the school community.” This sounds nice enough, but in Washington with its anti-family laws, this is not a good thing. It is destructive to families and oftentimes circumvents parents completely.

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As the youth mental health crisis continues to grow, Washington radical left democrats push for more laws that divide families and encourage minor children to be dependent on the state for their needs. This is by design and they are using the government school system to accomplish their goal.

In Washington, you DO co-parent with the government. You must take measures to protect your children and your family. The best place to start is by getting your children out of government schools and making a way to homeschool them. We know, for many families, this can be a difficult option to arrange, but it IS possible and there are many ways to make it work even if you have two parents working or single parent homes. If you need resources please reach out to our team via email: and we will be glad to assist you.

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