Get Mental Health Education on the School Curriculum
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When recording my podcast a concern that often comes up with our guests is the lack of education on the subject of Mental Health. With one in four of us experiencing mental illness every year, according to the charity Mind, this seems to be a real and very significant gap in our education system.
- One in ten children aged between 5 and 16 years has been diagnosed with/shows signs of a mental health problem, and many continue to have these problems into adulthood. (1)
- Over half of all mental ill health starts before the age of 14 years, and 75% of this has developed by the age of 18. (2)
- NHS England estimates that poor mental health costs the NHS and society £105 billion a year in England alone. (3)
The statistics are shocking, yet whilst there is a whole subject in the curriculum around our physical health in the form of PE, our young people are left without any knowledge on even the most common of mental illnesses.
Not only does this leave them unprepared and vulnerable when it comes to looking out for their own mental health, but also sets a standard that Mental Health is not discussed. This plants a seed of stigma that many carry for their whole lives.
Upon further research, there generally seems very little in the way of guidelines. For example, when Romeo and Juliet is studied as part of the curriculum when the two title characters kill themselves, this is considered the end of the story. The very serious topic of suicide is frequently not even mentioned as a part of these studies, and yet according to the BBC, suicide is the biggest killer of men under the age of 49.
It’s time to make a change. Even if a law was passed so every child receives one class about Mental Heath during their time at school, this would be more than the vast majority currently get. We are keen to hear back from those in power on a more extensive plan to better the lives of our nation’s young people.
- Mental Health education becoming mandatory for all schools in the UK.
- Every child having the ability to access a qualified counsellor through their school. This is something that many workplaces already offer.
- Every school offering Mental Health training for its staff.
Please join our petition to help bring us one step closer to making these requests a reality, thus helping safeguard the health of generations to come.
Thank you for reading, Bobby Temps
Host of ‘Mental - The Podcast to Destigmatise Mental Health’.
Learn more about this petition and it’s creator at mentalpodcast.co.uk/petition
1. Source: Green h, McGinnity A, Meltzer h et al. (2005) Mental Health of Children and Young People in Great Britain, 2004. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
2. Source: Murphy M and Fonagy P (2012). Mental health problems in children and young people. In: Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer 2012. London: Department of Health.
3. Source: NSPCC. How safe are our children? 2016
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