Mental Health Awareness Week (8-14 May)

This event will bring together key academics, politicians and local charities with a focus on mental health and generate a debate around key issues and possible solutions and ways forward.

Approaches towards child MH in the UK need to be seen in the light of the postindustrial neoliberal austerity-context, in which cuts have effected long-term established MH services, whilst at the same time there is lots of publicity around how ‘we are failing our children on this front’ – the likes of Tanya Byron, as well as social media (Guardian) consistently flag up failures in this area (e.g. Byron said that whilst 25% of children in the UK have a mental health issues, only 6% of the health budget is dedicated to this).

Sceptics on the other hand (‘Spiked’) argue that an over-focus on MH is counter-productive and that we have to be careful with how we define MH illness; add to that the fact that women are diagnosed far more often than men (potentially down to doctor/gp/diagnostic bias), altogether creating the need for a debate around these issues and find ways to inform and improve practice.

More information can be found at:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/mental-health-awareness-event-tickets-31962011236

Conference, 2016: Education and Childhood Studies: Research, Practice and Impact.

The School of Education and Childhood Studies held its 2016 conference on Monday, 11th July 2016, sharing some of our and others’ research, practice and impact in relation to the following themes:

  • Mental Health and Well-being in Childhood and Education
  • Childhood and International Development
  • Action Research in Teacher Education
  • Creative Pedagogies

Keynote speakers

Professor Rachel Brooks, Head of Department of Sociology, Professor of Sociology, University of Surrey
Internationalisation, Global Capital and English Secondary Schools

Dr Sarah Riley, Director of Research, Reader in Psychology, Aberystwyth University
If looks could kill: The social aspect of body image and how we might use that to build resilience

In this conference – two parallel sessions on ‘Mental Health and Wellbeing in Childhood and Education.

Download Research, Practice and Impact programme 2016 (pdf)

Seminar: 14 October 2015 – Evaluating School-Based Mental Health Literacy Programmes

Speaker: Dr Paul Gorczynski

School-based mental health literacy programmes aim to help children understand mental health problems, address stigmatizing attitudes, and access mental health resources. Although school-based programmes have been promoted as optimal ways of improving mental health literacy, their overall effectiveness in primary and secondary schools have not been evaluated thoroughly.

The purpose of this review was to examine the effectiveness of primary and secondary level school-based mental health literacy programmes on mental health knowledge, attitudes, and help seeking behaviour in children under the age of 18 years. In total, 47 studies were included in this review and most showed a positive intervention effect on all three aspects of mental health literacy.

The majority of studies evaluated mental health literacy programmes in secondary schools, focused on promoting knowledge and attitudes on mental illness in general, and involved more female than male students. Programmes varied in structure, length, delivery, and student interaction as well methods of evaluation.

Given programme and methodological heterogeneity, results should be treated cautiously and it is not possible to determine which mental health programme was most effective at addressing mental health knowledge, attitudes, or help seeking behaviour. Suggestions for future school-based mental health literacy programme research and practice are discussed.