Working to improve pupil mental health and wellbeing

Use the content below to help make sure your school is prioritising mental health and wellbeing in the most effective way.

External resources for pupil health and wellbeing

Place2Be – Coronavirus

Place2Be has useful links for parents and carers as well as school leaders and staff on activities to support the return to school. There are also a number of articles discussing some of the issues children and young people may be dealing with post lockdown.

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Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families – Coronavirus support

As well as helpful sections for young people and parents and carers, there is a section with advice for schools and colleges with booklets on good practice, managing unexpected transitions.

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YoungMinds – 360° Schools

A free newsletter that sends out resources, videos, tips and examples of good practice in mental health and wellbeing happening in schools.

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FutureLearn – Youth Mental Health

Get an introduction to managing anxiety disorders in teenagers, with a course ideal for teachers and healthcare professionals.

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Kidscape provide practical support, training, and advice to challenge bullying and protect young lives.

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Free support and guidance from The Key for School Governors

The articles below are free to access, giving you guidance as a school governor about the areas to focus on this term.

Every volunteer we place on a school board receives 12 months’ free access to The Key.

Coronavirus: how to set your school improvement plan (SIP)

You still need to set the strategic aims in your school’s SIP for the year ahead. If you’re the chair, find out how coronavirus may (and may not!) affect this, what you should bear in mind, and what you can expect from senior leaders.

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What to monitor during the pandemic

Be clear on the areas you should focus on when monitoring your school, so you can make sure you’re challenging and supporting school leaders and that things are working well.

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Coronavirus: how your budget might be affected

This overview of the current school finance landscape explains how coronavirus might impact the budget you’re in the process of approving.

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Coronavirus: how to approve your child protection policy addendum

Find out how to approve the addendum to your child protection/safeguarding policy, including questions to ask so you can feel assured that pupils are being kept safe during the COVID-19 school closure.

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Guidance from other governance/school leader organisations

NGA – Promoting positive mental health

Dr Pooky Knightsmith is director of the Children, Young People and Schools Programme at the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust and has been a school governor at four schools. In this article, she outlines the governing board’s vital role in supporting pupil and staff mental health and wellbeing.

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The School Bus – Role of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Governor

Use this role descriptor to ensure the governing board maintains a focus on the mental health and wellbeing of staff and pupils and monitors how the school supports good mental health for all.

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Information from the Government

Guidance for parents and carers on supporting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

This advice is to help adults with caring responsibilities look after the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people, including those with additional needs and disabilities, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Developing a whole organisational approach

This practice example is aimed at school staff and policy-makers wanting to understand how schools and colleges develop a whole organisational approach to support mental health and character education.

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Mental health and wellbeing provision in schools

This report summarises a research project on the information schools provide to support their pupils’ wellbeing and mental health.

The report uses a sample to evaluate activities and approaches in different schools, including:

  • what policies schools currently publish
  • how policies can help schools promote pupil wellbeing
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