Mental Health Awareness at Penrice by Tilly and Amber Approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year. In England, 1 in 6 people report experiencing a common mental health problem (such as anxiety and depression) in any given week. Mental health issues are a very real problem. Penrice helps support students with mental health issues, whether it’s 1 on 1 session to alleviate anxiety or help inside the class room to be the best they can be. One Penrice student has given us his thoughts and opinions on the mental health support in the school. How have Penrice helped you and what could the do to improve? Harrison’s response: “They have helped me by giving me certain privileges such as a 5 minute pass. They could improve by employing staff that are easy to talk to and you feel are trustworthy. Mental health can be caused by many things such as low self-esteem which can go unnoticed.” What is your understanding of mental health? Mental health can go unnoticed for many years. People with mental health issues sometimes don’t realise there’s something wrong until after they’ve got the help they need. There are many types of mental illnesses such as: Anxiety & Panic Disorders, Bipolar Disorder, Depression and Eating Disorders. A group of year 8’s from Penrice were asked about their knowledge on mental health. One student said “mental health needs to be more noticed” whilst another said, “we need departments for mental health near to us.” A few students stated, “doctors need to take it more seriously”. One student had a different view on mental health they said “mental health is unpredictable and hard to treat it comes and goes as it pleases.” Penrice Teachers – making a difference Teachers get involved with charities outside of school that help people with mental health issues. Mrs. Small is raising over £250 for the Invictus Trust, a group that supports young teens with bad mental health. She is running her 5th half marathon and supporting the trust on Sunday the 18th. People have different ideas on how to handle kids with mental health issues. Mrs. Malcolm gave her ideas on how children with mental health should be treated. She stated “in some ways children with mental health problems should be treated the same. However they should not be treated the same in some aspects as they would have/need counselling.” “On the one hand, when you have a tutor of 30 and 2 of them has mental health issues my teaching techniques wouldn’t change but I would discreetly give them help.” We interviewed Mrs Thomas from the LIC: https://www.penriceacademy.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/My-Movie.mp4 Overall mental health awareness is key to students health and happiness; it is encouraging to know there is support for students through the resources and staff at Penrice.