Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools

Establishing a whole school approach as Senior Mental Health Lead - beginners

The position of Mental Health Lead in a school can be one of the most transformational for staff, students, and the wider school community.

Establishing a whole school approach as Senior Mental Health Lead - beginners

Course Overview

  • Attendance


    Part Time
  • Dates


    November – February 
  • Venue


    Blended Learning 
  • Cost


    £800

The position of Mental Health Lead in a school can be one of the most transformational for staff, students, and the wider school community. However, establishing a clear vision can be one of the hardest. By engaging with best practice from school leaders, this course will support you in developing a holistic approach to mental health and wellbeing spanning universal, specific and targeted provision.

We recognise that leaders are incredibly busy and therefore this course is designed to allow you to complete all of the training and have real impact.

This course is ideal for those just beginning their journey as a Senior Mental Health Lead, or for those looking to re-establish their current approach.

Our course focuses on

  • Understanding your role as a senior mental health lead or having strategic responsibility for mental health in your school
  • Establishing your mental health strategy
  • Developing a mental health intent statement
  • How to establish a policy and interweave it with your other policies; including the new PSHE curriculum
  • How to conduct an evidence-informed audit of your current provision

You will be supported to create an intent statement, policy and an effective plan to improve your setting’s approach to mental health using the 8 principles of mental health in schools. You will leave with a transformational vision for your setting, clearly rooted in evidence and based upon best-practice from inspirational leaders across the sector.

The range of different interventions have been categorised by the National Research Council (2009) as being universal, selected and indicated. This course focuses on establishing the universal approach. Good school leadership means schools can proactively attempt to encourage and support positive mental health and wellbeing. Wells et al. have argued that universal interventions, where a positive and open culture is embedded across the whole school, can be the most affective intervention a school can engage in (Wells et al., 2003).  This begins with senior leaders recognising that they have to focus on social development as much as academic development (C4EO, 2014). Where this is clearly mapped out and explored there is often the biggest impact; the Seattle Social Development Project showed schools which built social and emotional development into their curriculums, either implicitly or explicitly, had lower risk taking behaviour from students and higher academic achievement (Jackson et al., 2012). This is why this course focuses on establishing the correct culture, vision and structures.

In addition to peer support and feedback, you will also receive personalised feedback and support from our expert facilitators as part of the audit and policy review. Participants will also receive individual one to one coaching and group coaching from one of our team of experienced school senior leaders.

The nature of this course is all based upon long term sustainable change. By developing a clear intent statement and policy, you as the Lead has a cohesive vision which you can then use to drive change forward. This course allows you to return to your setting with a vision and policy based on evidence, allowing you the tools to share with colleagues and getting them to buy into the vision.  This course focuses on developing a structure upon which real change can be made as structure builds culture.

Our programme delivery is as follows:

Throughout the units we will be supporting you to complete your framework

  • Unit 1 - The Whole School Approach (Leadership & Management of this as the Mental Health Leads)
  • Unit 2 - Setting the direction of travel – your intent statement (Creating an ethos & Environment – here we are looking at what is an intent statement and how do you create it and involve others)
  • Unit 3 – Identification and the preventative approach (Identifying the need and monitoring impact – here we will look at what you have in place and what you want to achieve)
  • Unit 4 - Mapping your provision (Targeted support and appropriate referrals)
  • Unit 5 - Enabling student voice/Working with Parents, Families and Carers (how do you best capture your stakeholders and what do you do with that information?) 
  • Unit 6 – Using your curriculum time to the maximum to support wellbeing (Curriculum, Learning and Development
  • Unit 7 – Policy – Why it matters and how to make it a living document (Leadership & Management)
  • Unit 8 – How do we involve staff and get everyone working together on wellbeing (Staff Development
  • Regional conference – coaching triad sessions and round table discussions using ‘open space technology’

Suitable for: Colleagues from all phases and settings who are just beginning their journey as a Senior Mental Health Lead, or for those looking to re-establish their current approach.

Delivery Mode: Blended Learning – our programme features online live learning, online forum discussions, online learning, individual and group coaching, personalised audit planning and access to a face to face conference (held regionally).

All participants will also have access to the Carnegie Mental Health and Wellbeing Lead Community to attend further CPD opportunities.

Duration: The course runs from November – February and is broken into five online units with seminars and two 121 session and finishes with a regional face to face day with coaching triads and round table discussions.

Cost: £800

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Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools

Strengthening the mental health of the next generation by supporting schools to make a positive change at all levels of the UK's education system, hereby improving outcomes and life chances.

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