This report from the Government Health and Education Committee says that schools and colleges struggle to provide adequate time and resources for pupils’ well-being.
An increasing number of education providers are having to cut back on mental health services, such as in-school counsellors, despite a growing prevalence of mental ill health among children and young people.
The report notes that half of all cases of mental illness in adult life start before the age of 15 and that 1 in 10 children between 5 and 16 years have had a diagnosed mental disorder.
Schools and colleges have a front line role in promoting and protecting children’s mental health and well-being but the government also has a significant part to play.
Both Committees welcome the government’s commitment to make PSHE mandatory in schools and colleges but the promotion of well-being cannot be confined to PSHE lessons. Whole school approaches are called for.
Because of the forthcoming general election, the Committee has closed this inquiry. It has been reported that Government responses may be published in the next Parliament.