On this page you can find information about:
- ways to integrate mental health and wellbeing across the whole school or college
- resources to use in your setting
Governments across the UK recognise the need to include mental health and wellbeing with the taught curriculum for schools. The Department for Education in England has published a package of support for all schools to support the implementation and teaching of the Relationships Sex and Health Education (RSHE) curriculum. Its guidance supports the wider work of schools in helping to foster pupil wellbeing and develop resilience and brings together all existing information available to schools, including the Mental Wellbeing teacher training module (June 2020), the statutory guidance, guides for parents and guidance on engaging parents and carers in relationships education.
There are many ways that information about mental health and wellbeing can be integrated across the curriculum and informally through the school culture.
Generally, it is important to make sure that pupils have regular opportunities to talk openly about mental health across all areas of school life. By supporting pupils to better understand their own mental health and how to take care of it, schools and colleges can encourage more open discussions and help break down the stigma around mental health.
Schools and colleges can do this in different ways, such as:
- through structured lessons via the RSHE curriculum
- promoting key events across the school year, like Children’s Mental Health Week (held every year in February) and World Mental Health Day (held every year on 10 October)
- running a wellbeing week for pupils and staff
- committing to CPD for staff on mental health and wellbeing
- including mental health and wellbeing as a standing agenda item in governor, senior leadership team, parent/carer meetings and newsletters and all staff meetings
- giving pupils regular opportunities through tutor time or small groups to talk about mental health and wellbeing issues
- regularly celebrating learning that is not only associated with attainment
- making sure that pupils and staff know the routes available to them to get support if they need it
- providing access to a range of reading materials that discuss mental health and wellbeing. The Reading Well scheme recommends a list of books for children and young people that cover all aspects of mental health in an accessible way.
- offering a range of lunchtime and after school clubs and activities.
- Encouraging pupils to look after their own mental health and well being where they are able to
The CARE animation is aimed at all staff working in schools and colleges. It recognises the importance of supporting children and young people’s mental health , and offers a simple principle to remember; CARE: (Curious, Approachable, Refer, Empathy). An accompanying poster and guidance notes are available to download.
Talking Mental Health (animation that comes with accompanying resources for ages 9-11)
We All Have Mental Health (animation that comes with accompanying resources for ages 11-14)
A free network for school staff and allied professionals which shares practical, academic and clinical expertise regarding the wellbeing and mental health issues that affect schools.
This website brings together quality-assured information, advice and resources to help primary schools understand and promote children’s mental health and wellbeing.
On My Mind aims to empower young people to make informed choices about their mental health and wellbeing. Pupils and college students can access free resources and information about a range of topics including self-care, loss and bereavement, and shared decision making.
A calendar of curriculum themes and occasions linked to mental health for the 2020 autumn term, with activity ideas and suggestions for each theme.
PSHE Association produced teacher guidance on teaching about mental health and emotional wellbeing through a Department for Education grant.
They have set out an accompanying suite of 18 lesson plans and resources for key stages 1 to 4. Topics include teaching children and young people to describe emotions, discuss their anxieties and worries and develop coping strategies.
Stonewall have created a library of resources for teachers including lesson plans, best practice guidance and toolkits which focus on LGBT inclusion. You can search a suite of resources including lesson plans for a variety of education settings (SEND, primary, secondary)