State of Education Report 2017 state-of-education-booklet-Final-WEB - Page 28

What interventions , if any , has your school put in place to support pupils ’ wellbeing ?
Working with parents 66 %
Counselling 58 %
Nominated staff member as a ‘ mentor ’ 57 %
Staff training to identify early indicators of mental health 57 %
Revision groups / clubs during assessment periods 55 %
General awareness-raising for pupils 51 %
Extra-curricular social activities 48 %
General awareness-raising for parents 42 %
Peer mentoring 36 %
Relaxation activities
35 %
Other – 7 % None – 2 %
How are school leaders supporting their pupils ?
We asked school leaders what they are doing to support pupils ’ wellbeing . In two-thirds ( 66 %) of schools , staff are working closely with parents . Counselling is also available in just over half ( 52 %) of primary schools and eight in 10 ( 83 %) secondary schools , reflecting the higher levels of social , emotional and mental health issues that school leaders are witnessing among their pupils .
“ The only reason our children remain motivated is the dedication of our teaching staff .”
Comments about the efforts of school staff to support pupil mental health are striking . One school leader notes that the
School leader only reason children remain motivated is the dedication of the teaching staff , and another places any improvement in pupil attributes to the school ’ s “ dedicated leadership team with a clear vision and strong backbone who are determined to do what is right for the children ”. Our data bears this out : 57 % of schools have trained staff to identify early indicators of poor mental health , and the same proportion has put in place nominated staff mentors to support pupils . Staff mentors are particularly common in secondary schools , with 75 % putting this intervention in place alongside 54 % of primary settings .
Comments also reflect widespread concern over the impact of the assessment system in primary schools . One school leader calls for the government to acknowledge the links between increased emotional health issues in young people and a wholesale change to the curriculum , without the necessary funding to support these changes . In the bid to address examination-related stresses , schools are running revision groups and clubs during assessment periods : this is happening in nearly nine in 10 ( 87 %) secondary schools and nearly half ( 49 %) of primary schools . Resilience groups , one-to-one interventions for anxiety / stress , and mindfulness groups are just some of the other structured interventions in place in schools across the country .
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