Topic

young people

43 petitions

Started 1 month ago

Petition to Nick Gibb MP

Implement acceptable support for mental health within schools

For many years, I have battled mental illness. From a young age, I have dealt with anxiety that can still highly impact me day-to-day. I have also had a previous bout of depression, and am now dealing with it once again. However, I have had a huge lack of support - particularly during my five years at high school. We had a Student Support Area, full of members of staff trained more specifically to help the students with problems they had. On multiple occasions, I went to this area seeking help when my mental health took a serious plummet. Especially within Year 10 and 11, I suffered horrific panic attacks and went up to the staff there for help … yet, I was turned away. It was typically because they were focused on students who simply didn't want to go to lessons. To me, this is not acceptable. I was forced to go back to lessons, unable to comprehend anything beyond the jumble of my thoughts and panic. I should have received some help and understanding, not been turned away - many times - because I was "overreacting" or as I was told on different occasions, "there is nothing wrong with you." Mental illness is something that affects 1 in 4 people. For young people suffering with different mental illnesses, 75% of those are not receiving treatment. A lot of the time, it is because they do not feel that they are able to talk about it. Having appropriate support within the school environment could help so many. Knowing that there is someone to go to at school where you can offload easier, and understand your mental health more, is vital for young people to feel more confident within themselves - and ultimately, feel better about their mental health. This petition is important because it can help so many young people. Up to 75% of mental illnesses typically start before the age of 18, which cannot be a coincidence with the pressures placed on young people to succeed nowadays. Having support for those with mental illnesses is incredibly important, and I cannot stress that enough. Thanks to my lack of support when I really needed it, it took me considerably longer to understand my mental illnesses and to believe I could fight them. Nick Gibb MP is the Minister of State for School Standards. One of his responsibilities is the mental health of young people and I believe that it is important he not only sees this petition, but acts upon it. Mental illness is no joke, nor should it ever be. Ergo, it needs to be properly addressed and supported.

Megan Lofthouse Mason
6 supporters
Started 2 months ago

Petition to Damian Hinds MP, Pendle Borough Council, Rossendale Borough Council, lancashire county council, Burnley Council

Make Education More Accessible to Students With Limited Internet Access

Every year, a young carer will miss, on average, 48 days of school. Over the course of five years in secondary education, they will miss an average of 240 days of their education, with many missing much, much more over the course of their twelve- to fourteen-year education under the age of eighteen. Yet, schools aren't accommodating of this; according to surveys conducted by the Carers Trust, only half of carers under the age of eighteen would say that there was someone within their place of education who is there to support and care for them. Furthermore, they aren't accommodating of most students who aren't from what we would consider to be a 'normal', middle-class background. 1500 schools, globally, use ShowMyHomework, over four million students use MyMaths, and one million use MathsWatch. Although planting education- homework, especially- firmly into the modern world may seem innovative and, to an extent, does make it more accessible, faster and less likely to be neglected by students and their parents/guardians, it does put other, less privileged students at a disadvantage. Students who don't have internet access- or don't have time to complete tasks set online when they do have internet access (young carers in particular)- are immediately set behind those who do, with staying behind, or handing tasks in late viewed as punishment for those particular students, by both their teachers and their peers. Not only that, but with young carers being hit especially hard by the current surge in online homework, studying and the reduction in many school's funding allocations towards their [non-fiction] libraries, they are doubly hit by being unable to stay behind to do that work on those 240 days. This, ultimately, (according to the Carer's Trust) makes it so that young carers tend to achieve lower grades at GCSE than their peers- with twice as many 16-18 year old carers not in education or employment than those who don't have dependants.  Not being in education or employment, or lower grades, as well as frequent punishment for not being able to hand in tasks on time can lead to high levels of stress, anxiety and sleep disorders, amongst other mental health issues- young carers, of course, are more susceptible to these, yet only 27% received some form of counselling in the last year. For that reason, I implore that work set by schools for completion outside of school hours becomes more accessible, otherwise a vicious cycle of not being able to study or do homework and therefore achieving lower grades than their potential will continue to target students without internet access, or those with limited internet access- particularly students from poorer backgrounds as well as many young carers.  This issue can be tackled in multiple ways, such as allowing students to have physical copies of homework (something that, unfortunately, cannot be done with resources such as MyMaths, broadening the non-fiction sections of school libraries, providing more physical resources for students (such as textbooks and revision guides) as well as making more allowances & less punishments for students who typically wouldn't be able to complete the work set and allowing for more focused tutoring within school for disadvantaged youths. As well as this, I ask that both local councils and local schools become more conscious of the presence of young carers within the community, by allowing for focused study or revision time for them within school. In addition they should provide support for them and make sure that every school's staff is aware of what a young carer is, does and how they can support and understand what they're going through and makes sure that every young carer has the resources that they need to catch up on those 48 days of the year that they, perhaps, may miss.

Daisy Simpson-Talmer
100 supporters