School Mental Health Lead: Will you be designating one?

26th July 2018| Blogs

With almost 400,000 children and young people a year in England being treated for mental health problems, it is vital to consider the role that schools and other settings can play.

It is no secret that diagnosed mental health issues among children and young people are rising sharply. There were a total of 389,727 "active referrals" for people aged 18 or younger in April alone. It is also true that half of lifelong mental illnesses start before the age of 14. How can we begin to tackle such a monumental challenge?

The government has published one of its plans to do so, which includes the appointment of School Mental Health Leads.

Likely to be existing members of staff within the setting, they will receive specialist training to support those children and young people who may be struggling. Furthermore, they will speak with staff about their own mental wellbeing, should they feel comfortable to do so.

Much like the Thrive Approach, School Mental Health Leads will strategise a whole school approach. Assessing what can be done for all children and adults to promote healthy wellbeing and resilience. Mental health problems may not be obvious to staff. Children may be performing well or not expressing disruptive behaviours. It is these children, who may be going under the radar, who especially benefit from the structure of a whole school approach.

Over to you

The DfE remains committed to offering senior mental health lead training to all eligible state-funded schools and colleges by 2025. Keen to support the mental wellbeing of each young person in your setting? Don't miss out on funding! Click here to book onto Thrive's DfE quality-approved course. 

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