Supporting Mental Health in Schools Inset

Three children in every classroom may have a mental health need. Find out how your school can best support them.
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The new category of social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs replaced the old category of behaviour, emotional and social difficulties (BESD) in the SEND Code of Practice 2015. Many schools used the BESD category for all those pupils who appeared to have any behaviour difficulties, from those who were withdrawn to those who had challenging behaviour. Often teachers were unsure of what was triggering the behaviours and so were not able to identify the underlying needs.

With the removal of the word behaviour and the introduction of mental health, teachers need to be able to identify the underlying needs of these pupils and offer support and strategies to intervene early to ensure that the pupil’s needs are met especially those who are experiencing mental health difficulties.

With 1 in 10 children and young people aged 5 - 16 suffering from a diagnosable mental health disorder it is possible that there are up to three children in every class who may go unnoticed and not offered the support they need.

In order to help these pupils succeed, schools have a role to play in supporting them to be resilient and mentally healthy.

This course will offer an overview of mental health issues and offer schools support and guidance on how to develop a Mentally Healthy school for both staff and pupils.

Full Course Content

Session 1: Introduction to Mental Health

  • Statistics
  • Definition – What is Mental Health?
  • Mental Health Needs – Conduct Disorders, Anxiety, Depression, Attachment Disorders, Eating disorders, substance misuse, self-harm
  • SEND and Mental Health 

Session 2: A Whole School Approach to supporting Mental Health Needs

  • Understanding Emotional Literacy 
  • Building Character and resilience
  • Working with parents and families
  • Working with Support Services

Session 3: Developing a Mentally Healthy School

  • Using the Mental Health Standards
  • Developing an Effective Mental Health Policy 
  • Strategies and Resources to support staff