Teaching about Mental Health
The skills, knowledge and the confidence to seek help to keep themselves and others physically and mentally healthy and safe are included as part of our developing PSHE curriculum. We will follow the PSHE Association Guidance to ensure that we teach mental health and emotional wellbeing in a safe and sensitive manner.
We will ensure that pupils and parents are aware of sources of support within school and in the local community and signpost or refer to relevant agencies. Some of these are displayed on the noticeboard in the meeting room and also posted on the school website. Pupils and parents can see the Early Help Leader in school
School staff may become aware of possible warning signs which indicate a pupil is experiencing mental health or emotional wellbeing issues. These warning signs should always be taken seriously and staff observing any of these warning signs should communicate their concerns with the designated safeguarding lead.
These may include:
- Changes in eating or sleeping habits
- Increased isolation from friends, becoming socially withdrawn
- Changes in activity and mood
- Lowering of academic achievement
- Talking or joking about self-harm or suicide
- Expressing feelings of failure, uselessness or loss of hope
- Changes in clothing – e.g. long sleeves in warm weather
- Secretive behaviour
- Repeated physical pain or nausea with no evident cause
- An increase in lateness or absenteeism
Working with Parents/Carers
The Early Help Leader will work with families to support with any issues. An Early Help Assessment may be appropriate to ensure an action plan is in place if any other agencies are involved. The EHL will be able to listen, signpost, liaise and refer to relevant statutory and voluntary agencies as well as putting in place support within school.
Moorgate Primary Academy is part of the ‘Hope Project’ in Staffordshire which offers mental health support to schools to complement their whole school approach. The EHL attends network and training sessions run by the co-ordinator.
Information for all parents
In order to support parents we will aim to:
- Highlight sources of information and support about common mental health issues on information boards and newsletters.
- Ensure that all parents are aware of who to talk to, and how to go about this, if they have concerns about their own child or a friend of their child
- Make our mental health policy easily accessible to parents
- Share ideas about how parents can support positive mental health in their children
- Keep parents informed about the topics their children are learning about in PSHE and share ideas for extending and exploring this learning at home.