One in six school-aged children between the age of 5 and 16 experience a mental health issue. According to NHS Digital, these figures have risen from one in ten in 2004 to one in six in 2020.
With 50% of mental ill health developing by the age 15 and 75% developing by the age of 18, it makes sense to focus on the wellbeing of young people before issues arise. Creating a positive culture for mental health and wellbeing in schools is an integral part of improving the lives of young people and education staff.
That is why St Andrew’s College, part of St Andrew's Healthcare, has developed the LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme for Schools. It is designed to help schools create a whole school approach to improving the wellbeing of their pupils and staff.
'Our LightBulb programme provides schools with an opportunity to build a culture of mental health support for their students and staff. We feel it’s very much part of our responsibility to make sure we're using our skills to help schools to pick up on problems early on and support their young people.' Cheryl Smith, Head Teacher St Andrew’s College
LightBulb is a mental wellness programme that provides a ready-made framework for primary and secondary schools. It enables those that participate to demonstrate and showcase excellence regarding mental health practice to regulatory bodies such as Ofsted.
It also provides training to staff that improves their knowledge, understanding and skills to identify potential signs and symptoms of mental health issues.
What are the main aims of the programme?
Once schools have signed up they will receive:
NHS England has provided funding for 20 secondary schools local to St Andrew’s as a pilot in partnership with Northamptonshire Health Foundation Trust (NHFT).
The programme also ties in fully with the Government’s plans to increase the amount of mental health support pupils get from schools.
The LightBulb Mental Wellness programme for schools is a not-for-profit programme. The staff at St Andrew's Healthcare feel very strongly about helping to improve the mental health and overall wellbeing young people and the people who work with them.
It is our aim to make the programme affordable and accessible to all schools. As we understand that budgets can be tight and there are a multitude of things that the money has to cover.
At the Lightbulb our priority is to help improve the emotional and mental wellbeing for everyone in a school or college setting. However, we aim to do it at a cost that is not prohibitive for any school.
The pricing structure is:
Primary schools with up to 200 students on roll £200
Primary schools with above 200 students on roll £400
Secondary schools £800
These prices include up to 7 hours of training for all school staff, Parents and students. In addition it covers the cost of the audit process and regular support throughout the process.
For more information or to sign up, telephone 01604 616797 or email LightBulb@stah.org
Some of the courses that are available to LightBulb schools are:
In addition, The LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme offers the MHFA (England) Youth Mental Health First Aid Courses at a heavily discounted price for all LightBulb Schools.
We are also happy to discuss individual school's mental health and wellbeing training needs and create bespoke training where possible.
All of our training courses are bookable by schools not involved in the LightBulb Programme for a fee. Prices available on application.
" The LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme provided us with an effective structured approach to improve our mental health provision for our school community. By providing a quality, bespoke training programme for our staff and parents, we now take a more proactive approach of promoting and supporting wellbeing. A well thought out and supportive programme tailored to our needs delivered by trained professionals."
Louise Fletcher Headteacher Swarland Primary School
We have been lucky enough to be complete The LightBulb Mental Wellness Programme Certification this year. Along with focussed and thoughtful presentations to parents, students and staff the LightBulb team have given us invaluable guidance in improving the provision of mental health to our whole community. In working towards the LightBulb Certificate, the school has developed a holistic and meaningful approach to mental health support.
“I think one of the biggest benefits to us has been the access to the high-quality training that we’ve been able to offer to all of our staff at all levels because part of this, for us, is it’s about every staff member on their day-to-day journey being able to spot the signs that worry us about children or spot those children that are going under the radar that perhaps need a little bit of support. For some of them it really has been life-changing and being able to come in and do some mindfulness and to identify that actually they need some time out has really changed outcomes for them.”
Lorna Beard Head of Inclusion for East Midlands Academy Trust