Educational mental health practitioners from five mental health support teams (MHSTs) in Lancashire and South Cumbria have recently completed their 12 months of training, meaning that there are now 17 teams in place to support 186 educational settings in the region.
A further 81 schools and colleges across Lancashire and South Cumbria are benefitting as a result. The specialist teams focus on helping children and young people experiencing emotional distress or wellbeing issues such as low-level anxiety, low mood, or behavioural difficulties.
The teams develop a whole-school approach by giving advice to staff and parents alongside supporting the children and young people, with the aim of helping children get the right support for their needs and helping them to stay in education.
Where appropriate, the MHSTs work with other services such as CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services).
Another team based in East Lancashire is due to start its training in October 2023, bringing the total of MHSTs in the region to 18 by the end of the year.
Helen Rimmer, children and young people’s mental health programme manager at NHS Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care Board, commented: “Mental health support teams help children and young people to thrive emotionally. As part of the national roll out, we have been able to introduce more teams to support more children and young people across Lancashire and South Cumbria.
“Our MHSTs equip pupils with tools and strategies to deal with life’s everyday challenges, such as moving to new schools, exam stress, worries, angry feelings, low mood and help to develop healthy relationships.”