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Mental Health & Wellbeing

St Thomas More School understands that a mentally healthy school is one that adopts a whole-school approach to mental health and wellbeing. We are a trauma informed school and have gained accreditation for our supportive and nurturing ethos through Nurture UK.

We help children to flourish, learn and succeed by providing opportunities for them, and the adults around them, to develop the strengths and coping skills that underpin resilience. We see positive mental health and wellbeing as fundamental to our values, mission and culture.

  

 Please find some useful information below that may prove useful during these unprecedented time.

  

Coping with Unexpected Change and Uncertainty

We know that our children's lives have been disrupted during these uncertain times. Some may be suffering from anxiety as schools reopen, others may be feeling isolated at home because they would like to return to school but can't. Professor Prathiba Chitsabesan, NHS England associate national clinical director for Children and Young People’s Mental Health, explained that: “Children and young people may be experiencing a variety of feelings in response to the coronavirus pandemic, including anxiety, distress and low mood." "It is important to understand that these are normal responses to an abnormal situation.”

 

Parents can take simple steps to help children who might be struggling to deal with the loneliness and uncertainty of lockdown or fears about returning to school.

Signs that parents should look out for include: 

  • Children are more upset or find it hard to manage their emotions
  • They may appear anxious or distressed
  • Increasing trouble with sleeping and eating
  • Appearing low in mood, withdrawn or tearful 
  • Reporting worried or negative thoughts about themselves or their future
  • For younger children, there may be more bed wetting 

If a parent is worried about their child’s mental health, they can help by:

  • Making time to talk to your child
  • Allow your child to talk about their feelings
  • Try to understand their problems and provide reassurance that you have heard them and are there to help
  • Help your child do positive activities
  • Try to keep a routine over the next few weeks
  • Look after your own mental health

 

The NHS offers a large amount of mental health support for children and young people, and if a child needs urgent mental health support or advice, check  nhs.uk  for up-to-date services in this area, including 24/7 crisis support. Links to local and regional services are detailed on this webpage alongside toolkits and mental health and wellbeing resources.

Advice to Parents in Supporting Young People to Cope with Unexpected Endings and Loss 

Anxiety Management Resources for Young People, Parents and Staff 

Transition Resources - Useful for Vulnerable Children and Children with SEND 

Mindful Monsters Resources

Mental Health Toolkit for Parents, Children and Staff during Mindful Monsters Help with Five Ways to Wellbeing by Teaching Us to 'Take Notice' and Have Fun with Mindfulnessthe Coronavirus Outbreak. Including resources to use with vulnerable children or children with SEND..

Responding to the Coronavirus - Resources for Mental Health and Wellbeing

Mental Health Advice - Coronavirus

The Bereavement Guide - Supporting Young Children through Grief and Loss - Nurture UK

 

Weblinks to Useful Organisations Supporting Mental Health and Wellbeing: