careersnursingAccording to the Mental Health Foundation, one in ten children between the ages of one and 15 has a mental health disorder. Rates increase as children reach adolescence, affecting 10.4% of boys aged 5-10, rising to 12.8% aged 11-15, and 5.9% of girls aged five-10, rising to 9.65% at age 11-15.

It is vital that young people can access the right support and services, so the Personal Social Health & Economic Education (PSHE) Association has published a range of guidance documents - Talking to pupils when they make mental health disclosures - to help health professionals know what to do and say in such sensitive situations.

The way in which that disclosure is first handled will be critically important, both in terms of the pupil’s immediate feelings and his or her likelihood of engaging in future support.

It also sets down ground rules for PSHE lessons, which include never discussing someone’s situation in a group setting, yet never promising confidentiality since disclosures may have safeguarding implications. However, teachers can listen sensitively and offer support while they gather the necessary information to decide what steps to take.

The downloadable advice, aimed at secondary: key stage 3 & 4 and secondary special levels, contains thoughts from pupils themselves, with some additional ideas to help you in initial conversations with pupils when they disclose mental health concerns.

Find out more at: