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The importance of children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing is well recognised today and is clearly of enormous concern to educationalists. A body of evidence supports the negative impact of poor mental health on multiple pupil outcomes. Adverse effects include low school attendance, lack of motivation, poor concentration and attention, as well as higher likelihood of health risk behaviours, selfharm and suicide (Patel, Filsher, & Hendrick, 2007). Recent efforts by the UK government to tackle growing
rates of psychological distress among children have included designating schools with increased responsibility for early detection, intervention and crisis management in respect of pupils with mental health difficulties. While it is acknowledged that mental health and wellbeing should be at the heart of children’s school experience, it is increasingly apparent that many education staff feel ill-equipped to manage escalating demands and competing priorities. Research suggests that these additional pressures are becoming deleterious to staff’s own wellbeing (Education Support Partnership, 2018). This session explores the premise that children’s mental health really is ‘everyone’s business and therefore requires a holistic approach. For schools, this means making sense of roles and responsibilities, and includes setting boundaries in order to create mentally healthy, whole school communities.

References

Michelle Jayman, Dr

Researcher/Lecturer at University of West London

Michelle Jayman is a lecturer and researcher for the School of Human and Social Sciences at the University of West London, UK. She is a Convenor for the BERA Mental Health, Wellbeing and Education Special Interest Group and a Champion for the...

Jonathan Glazzard, Professor

Professor of Inclusive Education at Leeds Beckett University

Jonathan Glazzard is Professor of Inclusive Education at Leeds Beckett University. He is Director for the Centre for LGBTQ+ Inclusion in Education and he researches mental health, disability and early reading development in children and young...

Anthea Rose
Anthea Rose, Dr

Research Fellow at University of Lincoln

Dr Anthea Rose is an experienced cross-discipline education and social science researcher with a specific interest in mental health, gender and social justice. Her work is framed within education and social policy and she is particularly...