Small scale study indicates that teaching about mental health can have a positive impact on young people
The children’s commissioner in her briefing about children’s mental health care in England explicitly mentioned that schools should ‘teach children of all ages about mental health and well-being’ (Children’s Commissioner, 2017)
Dr Bianca Finger-Berry undertook a small-scale research project with two secondary schools in Norfolk, who implemented the PSHE Association’s teaching programme ‘Teaching about mental health and emotional well-being’.
Key findings were that young people’s perception about their knowledge of mental health increased, young people talked more about mental health in general, and about their own mental health with others (in particular friends, school and parents), and a higher proportion of young people accessed help for their own mental health problems after the programme.
Young people recommended that the programme should be taught by a consistent teacher who has a positive relationship with students, who shows understanding, is caring and attentive, delivers the programme in an engaging way, and is mindful of students with mental health difficulties.
Over 90% of young people said that the programme should be taught to their peers.
You can read the executive summary here.
If you would like to teach the programme, we are offering training for secondary schools: http://s4s.norfolk.gov.uk/Event/58557
For more information please contact Dr Bianca Finger-Berry