Mental Health and Wellbeing at Maiden Erlegh
We are very aware of the increasing prevalence of mental health issues in schools and we have various strategies in place to address this at Maiden Erlegh.
Our Personal Development provision is delivered largely through weekly tutor sessions. These sessions cover a whole range of topics which include aspects of mental/emotional health and wellbeing.
Students also have one day off timetable each year called a Pastoral Day to focus on an aspect of Personal Development.
Theme of the Day
Drugs and Alcohol
|Relationships and Sex Education
Exam Stress and Preparation
Living away from Home
Please see our Personal Development page for further details.
We cover aspects of emotional health in assemblies. The JAC Team deliver assemblies on Emotional Intelligence, Supporting one another as a community, Understanding our Value and on Dealing with Pressure. We also invite guest speakers in to talk to our students on a variety of other issues.
We have recently had a number of external theatre companies perform and run workshops to our students, these have provided very popular and another way for us to convey important advice to students and for them to engage in a debate about the subject:
We pride ourselves on our high quality pastoral provision. This means that all staff understand that they have a responsibility to monitor the wellbeing of students in their care. Staff routinely share concerns about students with Heads of Year, Mrs Beckett (Deputy Safeguarding & Pastoral Support) and where appropriate with Mrs Bendall (Designated Safeguarding Officer).
We might respond to concerns raised in one of the following ways:
- A simple conversation with the student which is followed up at a later date.
- A conversation with parents to share a concern.
- Regular appointments with Mrs Beckett to discuss concerns and worries.
- Referral to JAC (youth work) - we commission the JAC team to spend a day each week in school during which time they meet with students experiencing difficulties. Their work is around helping students to make positive choices. Some of this work happens in small groups, but increasingly the students prefer working 1:1 with a JAC mentor. The sessions take place during the school day and on site and a student usually has about six sessions.
- Referral to School Counsellor – We now have our own school counsellor who is qualified and experienced in working with young people. Students are seen during the school day. Sessions are entirely confidential unless either the student gives permission for the information to be passed on, or where the counsellor feels that the students is or has been at risk of harm.
- Referral to a School Nurse – We have access to the services of an NHS School Nurse and referrals are usually made via a student’s Head of Year or Mrs Bendall. Referrals to the School Nurse are usually made when the concerns are around healthy eating, body-image or sexual health.
- In the event that we feel that a student is, or is at risk of becoming, mentally ill then we are likely to make a referral to CAMHS (Child and adolescent mental health service) in consultation with the parents.
Accessing Help and Support Away from School
We understand that some families prefer to access support away from school. In this event we encourage parents to let the student’s Head of Year know in order that we are aware that there are some issues and so that we can be sensitive to them. Families can access advice and support from:
- Your GP will be able to advise and signpost you.
- Some GP surgeries offer ‘Talking Therapy’ which can be helpful.
- Counselling via ARC
- Counselling via No5
- Wokingham Parenting Support offer courses and advice to parenting teenagers.
- Reading Parenting Support offer courses and advice to parenting teenagers.
- Look out for fliers sent by email from school advertising local courses on emotional health in teenagers.
- Young Minds offer free, confidential online and telephone support, including information and advice, to any adult worried about the emotional problems, behaviour or mental health of a child or young person up to the age of 25.
- Samaritans offer advice on DEAL (Developing Emotional Awareness and Listening).
- MIND provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem.
- Directory of Counsellors Find a qualified counsellor or psychotherapist close to you