“A friendly, creative environment for learning together”
This is an introduction to the project. For lots more information on the project and what our school has been doing, please go to the ‘Useful Information’ section. This section also contains advice for parents and games for you to play with your children. We hope that you find this helpful. There are also some useful website links at the bottom of this page.
Mental Health Research
Research has shown that 11% of children and young people between the ages of 5-16 have a diagnosable mental health condition (NHS Digital, 2017). It is also thought that 75% of all adult mental health conditions start before the age of 18, with 50% starting before the age of 14 (Kessler et al., 2005). Also, the number of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) that a child has experienced has been shown to be related to a higher incidence of a variety of mental and physical health difficulties (Hughes et al, 2017).
Research has also shown that schools are in an ideal position to provide a nurturing, supportive environment and positive, life-enhancing relationships that can be protective against mental health difficulties developing in the future. In particular, holistic, whole-school interventions with a focus on providing a healthy and safe environment are most likely to have a positive impact on mental health outcomes (Langford et al., 2014)
By offering our students a safe, structured environment where they feel they are attuned with others and that helps them develop strong emotional regulation skills, we are giving them a strong foundation from which to achieve their full potential in future life. Everyday interactions are key in building a feeling of safety, belonging and connectedness in order for emotional and cognitive brain development to flourish. When a child feels they have a strong connection to another person, whether adult or peer, it enables them to develop skills in emotional regulation that leads to resilience and confidence in the face of challenging situations in future life.
The Healthy Minds Project
We are happy to report that our school is involved in a joint project with Sheffield Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) called Healthy Minds.
Healthy Minds is a project that focuses on developing the whole school environment to best support young people’s mental health, rather than working on a one-to-one basis with students.
The Healthy Minds project includes:
- Specialist mental health training for key staff in schools.
- Training for all school staff on the fundamentals of young people’s mental health and the implications for learning.
- A Healthy Minds survey which students, parents / carers and staff have completed. This has helped us to find out a range of views so that we can best understand the specific needs of our school.
- Based on the Healthy Minds survey, a mental health action plan has been developed for our school. This will include whole school interventions designed to meet mental health needs across the school.
- Creating a group of student Healthy Minds Champions. These students will represent children at our school making sure their views are heard and integrated into the school’s mental health action plan.
- Clarity for staff, students and parents about who they can talk to if they are worried about a young person’s mental health.
What is the Healthy Minds Project?
What we already do to support Mental Health in our School
Our School Action Plan
Emotional Wellbeing Games Adult Guide
Emotional Wellbeing Games Children’s Version
Parent’s Sleep Guide
The Good-Night Guide for Children
‘Getting a Good Night’s Sleep’ Guide for Adults
Daily Sleep Diary