Schools: Mental Health

Department for Education written question – answered on 17th October 2018.

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Photo of Luke Pollard Luke Pollard Labour/Co-operative, Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans he has to make ensure that the training for the proposed Designated Senior Leads for Mental Health in schools includes information on the link between speech, language and communication needs and mental health, and how to recognise and respond appropriately to speech, language and communication needs.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The role of the Designated Senior Leads for Mental Health in schools will be to take a strategic overview of a school or college’s approach to children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing. The Department is currently working towards a procurement of training for Designated Senior Leads, to be provided from the 2019/20 academic year. This will set out the broad areas that the training should cover to enable leads to put in place whole school approaches that incorporate the promotion of good mental wellbeing and resilience amongst pupils and staff. Where a school puts a lead in place, their role should complement existing statutory roles, including the SEN coordinator to ensure that all pupils get the right support to meet their needs.

To increase support, the Government is also funding new Mental Health Support Teams working in or near schools. The teams will include a new trained workforce which can provide treatment and support help reduce mental health problems worsening or developing in the first place. These new teams will be tested in ‘trailblazer’ areas from January 2019.

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