About this course

International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY) is being responsive to the Covid-19 crisis. From July 2020 all ITSIEY training will be taking place online and will continue to be delivered by experts in infant mental health. Rich teaching content, as always, will be enhanced by group discussions with the tutor, small breakout groups for participants and video presentation.


This module will explore in-depth the complex subject of parental mental illness. Seminars and practice based workshops which aim to embed understanding and help you apply these skills to your work setting. We will look at the adverse impact parental mental illness can have on a baby’s development, and ways for different professional roles to work together to provide a metaphorical safety net to help the most at risk parents and babies/toddlers. This specialist module promotes a systemic approach to understanding the complex interactions between mentally ill parents, their families, their babies, and the practitioners involved in their care. It will facilitate a way of understanding several different professional discourses: the diagnostic language of adult mental health, the legal language and framework of child protection procedures, and an attachment based understanding of the emergence of emotional psychopathology in a baby if appropriate help is not available.


1.Introduction: the spectrum of mental wellness to mental illness
2.Mood disorders and substance misuse
3.Child protection and personality disorders
4.Psychotic symptoms and the different mental illnesses that have psychotic symptoms
5.Forensic expertise and the involvement of the legal system
6.Integrating understanding about child protection and risk and the emotional impact on practitioners

Who is this training suitable for?

ITSIEY is suitable for professionals working in the field of infant and perinatal mental health e.g. nurses, therapists, psychologists, family therapist, health visitors, social workers and psychiatrists. If you have any specific questions about the suitability of the module for your practice, please email training@annafreud.org.


System requirements for online training

The online platform Zoom will be used to deliver this training. Prior to booking on, please ensure you meet the system requirements so you're able to join this training. 

Before the training, please test your equipment is working by going to Zoom.us/test and follow the instructions.

About International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY)

ITSIEY is the winner of 2017 Maternal Mental Health Alliance Emma Cadywould Award for Perinatal Mental Health Education and Training, see our news story here. 

Delivered by a unique collaboration of internationally acclaimed Centres of Excellence (Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust and Yale University Child Study Centre), the International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY) provides mental health professionals with expert-agreed standards of knowledge and skills to work confidently with infants (0-3) and their families. This exclusive training encompasses a range of theories “seamlessly interwoven into a shared conceptual framework” (student). The ecological model that is at the heart of its vision and curriculum uses most up to date knowledge of advances in neuroscience combined with strong clinical and research experience relevant to collaborative work with families. ITSIEY builds a forum for international cross pollination of knowledge, skills and research in the field of infancy and early years mental health for practitioners.

Currently ITSIEY offers the following modules:

We have compiled an essential reading list for this training. This will be made available for you on-line three weeks before the training. The essential reading list has been carefully chosen to support the learning objective of the course so we would strongly encourage you to read this as thoroughly as possible before the training begins.

Special offer

A 5% discount is available for students who book on more than one ITSIEY module at the same time. Please contact training@annafreud.org to claim this offer.

Book Now

2nd March 2021 - 3rd March 2021
  • Online (joining instructions will be shared with registrants close to the event)
  • Days 3 and 4 will take place on 24th & 25th March, Days 5 and 6 will take place on 26th & 27th April
  • 6 days (There will be a break between days 2 and 3 and days 4 and 5)
  • 10:00 - 16:00 (UK time)

Training fee

Download Timetable

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