Pilot for mental health kicks off in schools

A national pilot programme to support and improve the mental and emotional well being of children in schools kicks off in Merton this month.

Merton is one of twenty-five boroughs in the country to take part in the national ‘Targeted Mental Health in Schools’ (TaMHS) project, which aims to use innovative ways to promote positive mental health and emotional well being of pupils.

The pilot will build on the important work already taking place in Merton’s schools and targets those groups who have high levels of need, such as children in care.

Merton will work with partner organisations, using a coordinated approach, to ensure that children receive timely and early intervention in dealing with emotional or mental health issues.

Cabinet member for Children’s Services, Councillor Debbie Shears, says: “Childhood years are the most influential times in one’s life. Ensuring that children have the support systems necessary to grow and develop into happy, healthy young adults is an absolute priority and we’re delighted to have been chosen to take part in this national programme.

“All too often mental health problems among children remain hidden. This pilot will mean that issues surrounding mental health in children are brought to the fore so that we can ensure our children receive the additional support and assistance they need.”

The pilot is taking place in twelve primary schools and two secondary schools already involved in Merton’s SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning) programme before being introduced to other schools over the next few years.