Improving research-informed practice in schools

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We have recently launched an initiative aimed at teachers, to enable schools to access and put to use resources that can genuinely make a difference to the mental wellbeing and educational outcomes of young people.

In recognition of the rising mental health challenges faced by children and young people, we have kick-started our Mental Health in Schools initiative, with the aim of producing a series of webinars for teachers which disseminate research-informed, evidence-based knowledge and practice around current key issues in the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people.

The first of this pilot series, known as ‘Ask the Expert’ aims to increase the knowledge of teachers and consists of 4 x 75-minute live webinars, with an expert guest speaker and hosted by Professor Barry Carpenter. The webinars have been developed in collaboration with the education charity, Coram Life Education. Topics are rooted in the new statutory relationships, sex and health education (RSHE) curriculum, with Screen Time and Sleep delivered in the Autumn term of 2021 and Anxiety and Common Mental Health Conditions coming in Spring 2022.

The second of this pilot series, coined ‘Pedagogy in Practice’, is aimed at creating engaging
resources for teachers relating to mental health teaching themes in the RSHE framework and is
closely aligned to the ‘Ask the Expert’ series. ‘Pedagogy in Practice’ aims to stimulate innovative
practice in teaching and learning to meet curriculum requirements and support mental health. The pilot phase will include the development of two modules: Sleep and Anxiety, and will be developed in partnership with The Chartered College of Teaching during the first half of 2022.

Professor Barry Carpenter, CBE, OBE, D. Litt, PhD, ACAMH Board Member and Mental Health in Schools Advisory Group Chair, said “We are committed to helping improve the knowledge needed by Teachers to deliver the statutory Relationship, Sex & Health Education (RSHE) curriculum requirements, specifically in relation to subjects pertaining to mental wellbeing. We are also looking to build capacity for differentiating and personalizing content to meet individual, as well as group needs.”

He goes on to say “Schools are an anchor institution in supporting young peoples’ mental wellbeing, we believe ACAMH and our partners Coram Life Education and The Chartered College of Teaching can truly make a difference by sharing the best evidence in a way that is accessible and tailored to the needs of teaching professionals.”

We plan to develop a wider series of Ask the Expert & Pedagogy in Practice resources over the course of the next 18 months, incorporating up to ten of the most pertinent topics within the RSHE framework, such as Trauma, Self-Harm and Bereavement.

Discussion

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Hi, I have lived experience of living with Mental Health Issues, especially Anorexia Nervousa. I recently lectured at Newcastle University , and was asked lots of questions. One raised, is around prevention znd how is eould by helpful for teachers to identify those who struggle with Eating/Mental Health. A child may not have a low BMI, yet silently struggling. I would be happy to contribute to any webinar if appropriate.

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