fb-trackingSkip to main content

Leading London school teams up with mental health specialists

Barking Abbey School's logo on school buildingTags Adults , Business , Children , Council , Family , N/A , Residents , Teenagers

Barking Abbey School in east London has partnered with the mental resilience programme Mindscreen, enrolling 660 pupils after a successful trial.

The pandemic has disrupted young people's lives at home and school, and piled pressure on mental health services and Special Educational Needs Coordinators (SENCos).

A recent study by the Centre for Longitudinal Studies concluded that low self-esteem, anxiety and depression amongst children are at their highest levels in a decade. And with half of all cases of adult mental illness starting by the age of 14, the prevention and early support for young people has never been more vital.

The school has been quick to take action to support its young people and their families, acknowledging the need to tailor support for each student. The programme includes a unique personality profile for each young person and lesson plans designed to support them in improving self-awareness and self-esteem.

The school's SENCo, Lauren Casey, uses Mindscreen's early intervention assessment and development framework to support students. She said: "Using Mindscreen with our students is proving very beneficial and gives us a good oversight of how we can help them.

"The programme covers all areas, including looking at potential careers, and supports our discussions with students and their parents to unlock our young people's potential."

"We're really excited to be rolling this out across Barking Abbey School to ensure that we can develop all of our pupils to be successful, in addition to achieving the amazing academic results we are famous for."

Toolkits for use in a family setting make it easier for parents to connect with their children on a deeper level, establishing preferred methods of communication and understanding their unique strengths and motivations.

Headteacher, Tony Roe, commented: "A lot of the focus in schools is on measuring academic progress, and throughout the pandemic, there has quite rightly been a lot of talk about lost academic learning.

"However, we have also seen a huge loss in pupils' self-esteem, confidence and their ability to deal with change and be resilient.

"Mindscreen allows us to identify the pupils most affected and provides proven strategies to help develop these key attributes in young people.

"We're really excited to be rolling this out across Barking Abbey School to ensure that we can develop all of our pupils to be successful, in addition to achieving the amazing academic results we are famous for."

The Mindscreen programme complements the school's existing Strong Minds mental health programme and helps pupils develop their BEST habits: Bravery, excellence, self-discipline and teamwork.

Councillor Evelyn Carpenter, Cabinet Member for Educational Attainment and School Improvement, said: "The pandemic has had a significant impact on young people's mental health.
"A breakdown in their routines, limited social contact with their peers and disruption to their education has caused many to feel anxious and stressed.

"I applaud the work of the staff at Barking Abbey School for facilitating this beneficial collaboration.

"Helping children to understand themselves and supporting them to build their confidence will help them to achieve more, both now and in the future."
 

Subscribe to One Borough newsletter

Subscribe to receive updates on news, events, jobs and council updates that affect you.

Subscribe