Head-First Press Release - January 2016




Lambeth and Southwark school pupils to receive specialist emotional health and wellbeing education


Pupils from all primary and secondary schools across the London boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark can now get help to cope better with stressful and difficult situations.


Head-First, is a new early intervention initiative which forms part of the Children and Young People’s Health Partnership (CYPHP) – an ambitious programme to improve the health and wellbeing of the youngest residents of Lambeth and Southwark. It will be delivered by innovative training provider, The Training Effect (TTE), to all schools who sign up to the scheme.


This announcement follows Prime Minister Theresa May’s pledge to ‘transform’ attitudes towards mental health problems in schools and companies across the UK. In a speech to the Charity Commission, Mrs May outlined extra training for teachers, more online self-checking for those with concerns and a review of services for children and teenagers.


Through upskilling teachers and other school professionals, Head-First will allow young people to develop their social and emotional competencies which will help them to manage their emotions and develop the skills needed to positively deal with adversity. From the transition between primary and secondary education to the pressure of exams, Head-First will support children and young people to successfully navigate the challenges of life.


Carole Pellicci, Headteacher at Southwark Park Primary School, Rotherhithe, said: "We were delighted to hear that this new service had been commissioned by CYPHP and are very pleased to be one of the first schools involved. Ensuring that children and young people experience positive wellbeing and understand emotional resilience is a key area of focus for our school and for schools across the UK. We look forward to working with TTE to make Head-First a success for schools across Southwark and Lambeth."


The proposed model is free to schools and involves a school-wide audit to identify need, staff skills and competencies, as well as gathering data related to existing emotional health and resilience. Following that, a tailored programme will be delivered to each school, in collaboration with partners in both boroughs, to ensure the service complements and adds to the local provision and support already in place. The model will work with the existing personal, social and health education curricula, and offer additional modules and lessons covering emotional resilience and emotional health.


The project will run for one year, from November 2016 to November 2017, with scope to extend for a further three years. The first tranche of schools that have already signed up will start their training in February 2017. TTE is on course to meet its target, wit over 20 schools signed by the end of 2016 – an extremely positive start to the project.


Mark Bowles, TTE’s Managing Director, said: “It is great to be working with CYPHP and educating pupils across both boroughs on emotional resilience and offering practical advice and coping strategies to help support young people in their school years.”


Pam Nelson, CYPHP’s Interim Programme Manager, said: “Good mental and emotional health is a key part of keeping our children and young people thriving, and there is much evidence to say it pays to prevent and to tackle challenges early. Through Head-First, we want to help our local schools understand better how their students are coping, and to give them the tools to support them in the best possible way. We strongly encourage schools to sign up to the free programme and take a fresh look at how to tackle emotional health education in the classroom.”


Indeed, the Department for Education’s report on ‘Mental health and behaviour in schools’¹ supports the concept of the early intervention, citing: “There are things schools can do – including for all of their pupils, for those showing early signs of problems and for families exposed to several risk factors – to intervene early and strengthen resilience, before serious mental health problems occur.


Head-First complements existing schemes run locally, including a psycho-education programme for primary schools led by South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust.


Any schools in the boroughs of Lambeth and Southwark can find out more information and details on how to sign up by visiting the Head-First website www.head-first.org.uk



Notes to editors:

About The Training Effect

The Training Effect (TTE) is a leading provider of health-based intervention around children and young people. Founded in 2011, it has quickly become an established provider to the public sector, private and third sector.

The Training Effect designs, develops and delivers training, health intervention programmes and services which save money, improve outcomes and support frontline service delivery.

All TTE staff are subject-specific experts in their particular professional field. This means we bring real world expertise and practical solutions to all of our projects. We are experts in substance misuse, families with complex needs, risk-taking behaviour, emotional and mental health.

Find out more at www.thetrainingeffect.co.uk 

About the Children and Young People’s Health Partnership (CYPHP)


The Lambeth and Southwark Children and Young People Health Partnership (CYPHP) is a local partnership of commissioners and providers, parents, carers, young people, and researchers committed to improving the way healthcare is delivered for the 190,000 children and young people (CYP) in Southwark and Lambeth. The programme is funded by Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity and has been co-designed with local children, young people, parents, clinicians, researchers and other providers and commissioners across the local health economy with the aim of promoting sustainable and scalable change by testing and proving the benefits of a new model of care and approaches to healthcare delivery.

The model of care and supporting programme has been designed to:

  • Improve children’s and young people’s health
  • Improve the quality of children and young people’s healthcare
  • Improve the health system for CYP, for example by creating a learning healthcare system – building an evidence base to enable continued improvement of CYP services during and after the programme

Find out more at www.cyphp.org

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