fb-trackingSkip to main content

Emotional health and wellbeing in schools

Promoting emotional wellbeing in Barking and Dagenham schools

London Borough of Barking and Dagenham (LBBD) builds on existing relationships with schools to promote whole school approach and systems to promote emotional wellbeing. LBBD works collaboratively with NEFLT and CAMHS to support the children and young people who attend our schools. This includes the implementation of projects such as More than Mentors, the Triple P - Positive Parenting Programme, and Kooth.

More than Mentors

More than Mentors is a new and creative model of peer mentoring, which has been co-designed and co-delivered as a pilot study in east London. Through the Department of Health’s 'health and social care volunteer fund' Community Links has been invited to take the lead in rolling this programme out in 5 boroughs across the capital - with Jo Richardson Community School and Eastbury Community School, both in Barking and Dagenham, being the first schools where we have successfully delivered this intervention.

More than Mentors draws on the best evidence from across the field, exploring peer mentoring as a way of preventing significant mental health conditions in young people. Peer mentoring, where older adolescents support their younger peers, has been shown to prevent the development of mental health problems in research studies.

More than Mentors evaluation summary (PDF, 508.00 KB)

Triple P - Positive Parenting Programme

The Triple P - Positive Parenting Programme is one of the most effective and best-known positive parenting systems in the world. Its range of programmes gives parents simple, practical strategies to build strong, healthy relationships, confidently manage children’s behaviour and prevent problems developing.

Schools and CAMHS practitioners have been trained to deliver workshops for parents in LBBD and dates of these groups can be found here:

Triple P parenting workshops


Kooth provides an online counselling and well-being service for children and young people.

This pilot project is targeting four specific schools in Barking and Dagenham; Barking Abbey School, Robert Clack School, Warren School, and Jo Richardson Community School. The website offers support for young people presenting with issues such as anxiety /stress, family relationships, self-worth and self-harm.

Kooth website

Healthy Schools Partnership Toggle accordion

The Healthy Schools London Awards programme has four key strands, one of which is emotional wellbeing and mental health (EWMH). The bronze award asks for evidence from the following areas across the four strands:

  • leadership, management and managing change
  • policy development
  • learning and teaching, curriculum planning and resourcing
  • school ethos, culture, environment and SMSC development
  • provision of support services for children and young people
  • staff continuing professional development (CPD), health and wellbeing
  • partnerships with parents/carers, local communities and external agencies to support pupil health and wellbeing

Within the local programme we have also started to ask for additional evidence around EWMH including a whole school policy which brings together all the above and is available to view on the school website. When a school moves on the silver and gold awards they can choose an area of focus which may include EWMH. The process enables the school to identify an area of need eg building emotional resilience, setting measurable outcomes by collecting baseline data, reviewing the curriculum, training needs and any outside support available and finally measuring the impact through the gold report. A key part of this school improvement tool is to ensure that the positive impact can be sustained by the school and shared within the school networks.

The schools are supported through this process and encouraged to use local data on children and young people’s mental health from health and wellbeing surveys such as the SHEU report, child health profiles and make links with local priorities identified in the JSNA and health and wellbeing strategies amongst others. The programme can also help to support the recommendations set out in the green paper.

'Transforming children and young people’s mental health provision’ including supporting schools to appoint a mental health lead and ensuring a whole school approach is taken to improving the EWMH of the school community.

For more information on the contribution healthy schools in LBBD can make, contact:

Becky Casey


Local CAMHS transformation plan Toggle accordion

The transformation of children and young people’s mental health is led by local areas. This means professionals from across the NHS, public health, children’s care, education and youth justice working together with children, young people and their families to design and provide the best possible services.

To support this local leadership and accountability, NHS England asked clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to work with commissioners and providers across health, social care, education and youth justice and the voluntary sectors, to develop local transformation plans for children and young people’s mental health (LTPs).

Barking and Dagenham Local CAMHS transformation plan (PDF, 1.3 MB)

Mental health adviser Toggle accordion

A mental health adviser post based within the Education Core Team was created to:

  • support schools to identify, assess and make provision for children with emotional and mental health needs
  • develop approaches that schools can use to support children with emotional and mental health needs and track how these approaches are working
  • support the development of partnership with parents and carers to promote pupils’ social and emotional well-being

Mental health and behaviour advice for schools (PDF, 846.00 KB)

LBBD behaviour and SEMH guidance (PDF, 758.00 KB)

New relationships and health education in schools Toggle accordion

All schools will teach children about good physical and mental health, how to stay safe on and offline, and the importance of healthy relationships under bold new plans published in July 2018 by the Department for Education.

Under the proposals, all pupils will study compulsory health education as well as new reformed relationships education in primary school and relationships and sex education in secondary school.

The guidance, which was last updated in 2000, will become compulsory in all schools across the country from September 2020 and will put in place the building blocks needed for positive and safe relationships of all kinds.

New relationships and health education in schools - Gov.uk


The Department for Education is seeking views on the draft regulations, statutory guidance, and regulatory impact assessment relating to relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health education.

Consultation website