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Children: Behaviour Disorders

Department for Education written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Paul Farrelly Paul Farrelly Labour, Newcastle-under-Lyme

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the trend in the level of use of medication to treat behavioural issues in young children.

Photo of Paul Farrelly Paul Farrelly Labour, Newcastle-under-Lyme

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the guidance his Department issues to schools on the use of medication prescribed to children to treat behavioural issues.

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

The information requested is not held centrally, on the number of pupils who use medication to treat behavioural issues.

The Government is committed to pupils with medical conditions being properly supported at school so that they have full access to education.

In 2014, the Government introduced a new duty on schools to support pupils with all medical conditions and has published statutory guidance on this for schools and others. The guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supporting-pupils-at-school-with-medical-conditions--3.

The guidance does not specify which medical conditions should be supported in schools. Instead, it focuses on how to meet the needs of each individual child and how their medical condition impacts on school life.

In June 2014, the Department issued non-statutory advice on mental health and behaviour to help schools identify underlying mental health problems in young people, which can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/mental-health-and-behaviour-in-schools--2 .

The advice clarifies the responsibility of the school, outlines what they can do and how to support a child or young person whose behaviour may be related to an unmet mental health need.

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