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Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Professionals Mental Health Support


Guidance for creating and promoting positive mental health and wellbeing in schools can be found here, including a policy document created by Bottisham Village College and the CAMH Learning and Development team, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust, which is intended as a template for other secondary schools.

The follwing resources below are taken from this policy.

Anxiety, panic attacks and phobias

Anxiety can take many forms in children and young people, and it is something that each of us experiences at low levels as part of normal life. When thoughts of anxiety, fear or panic are repeatedly present over several weeks or months and/or they are beginning to impact on a young person’s ability to access or enjoy day-to-day life, intervention is needed.

Online support: 


  • Lucy Willetts and Polly Waite (2014) Can I Tell you about Anxiety?: A guide for friends, family and professionals. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Carol Fitzpatrick (2015) A Short Introduction to Helping Young People Manage Anxiety. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers


Ups and downs are a normal part of life for all of us, but for someone who is suffering from depression these ups and downs may be more extreme. Feelings of failure, hopelessness, numbness or sadness may invade their day-to-day life over an extended period of weeks or months, and have a significant impact on their behaviour and ability and motivation to engage in day-to-day activities.

Online support: 

  • www.youngminds.org.uk Information and advice. Parent’s helpline.
  • www.relate.org.uk Counselling and on line information and support to families
  • https://www.cwmt.org.uk The Charlie Waller Memorial Trust seeks to equip young people to look after their mental wellbeing and to help people to recognise the signs of depression in themselves and others so that they know when to seek help.
  • www.inhand.org.uk A digital friend that provides young people with tools, advice and activities when their mental health is at risk
  • www.docready.org.uk helps young people feel more confident and get better results when they see their GP about a mental health issue.
  • www.findgetgive.org.uk offers support for young people to find mental health support in their area and give feedback on it.
  • www.headsmed.org.uk Accessible, straight talking information on young people’s mental health medication
  • CHUMS http://chums.uk.com/low-mood-and-feeling-sad/
  • CWMT https://www.cwmt.org.uk/parents-guide


  • Christopher Dowrick and Susan Martin (2015) Can I Tell you about Depression?: A guide for friends, family and professionals. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers

Eating problems

Food, weight and shape may be used as a way of coping with, or communicating about, difficult thoughts, feelings and behaviours that a young person experiences day to day. Some young people develop eating disorders such as anorexia (where food intake is restricted), binge eating disorder and bulimia nervosa (a cycle of bingeing and purging). Other young people, particularly those of primary or preschool age, may develop problematic behaviours around food including refusing to eat in certain situations or with certain people. This can be a way of communicating messages the child does not have the words to convey.

Online support:


  • Bryan Lask and Lucy Watson (2014) Can I tell you about Eating Disorders?: A Guide for Friends, Family and Professionals. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Pooky Knightsmith (2015) Self-Harm and Eating Disorders in Schools: A Guide to Whole School Support and Practical Strategies. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Pooky Knightsmith (2012) Eating Disorders Pocketbook. Teachers’ Pocketbooks

Obsessions and compulsions

Obsessions describe intrusive thoughts or feelings that enter our minds which are disturbing or upsetting; compulsions are the behaviours we carry out in order to manage those thoughts or feelings. For example, a young person may be constantly worried that their house will burn down if they don’t turn off all switches before leaving the house. They may respond to these thoughts by repeatedly checking switches, perhaps returning home several times to do so. Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) can take many forms – it is not just about cleaning and checking.

Online support

  • OCD UK www.ocduk.org/ocd Advice line, Advocacy, publications, treatment information and support groups


  • Amita Jassi and Sarah Hull (2013) Can I Tell you about OCD?: A guide for friends, family and professionals. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Susan Conners (2011) The Tourette Syndrome & OCD Checklist: A practical reference for parents and teachers. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass


Self-harm describes any behaviour where a young person causes harm to themselves in order to cope with thoughts, feelings or experiences they are not able to manage in any other way. It most frequently takes the form of cutting, burning or non-lethal overdoses in adolescents, while younger children and young people with special needs are more likely to pick or scratch at wounds, pull out their hair or bang or bruise themselves.  

Online support: 

  • www.SelfHarm.co.uk A project dedicated to supporting young people impacted by self harm, providing a safe space to talk, ask any questions and obtain help to overcome difficulties. It also provides information about how to stay safe
  • National Self-Harm Network: www.nshn.co.uk provides crisis support, information and resources, advice, discussion and distractions and is available 24/7. Also supports and provides information for families and carers
  • https://youngminds.org.uk/what-we-do/our-projects/no-harm-done No Harm Done? Created in collaboration with the Charlie Waller memorial trust and the Royal College of Psychiatrists. For young people who are self harming or at risk of self harming, their parents and professionals working with them. Provides a series or resource publications and short films.
  • https://www.familylives.org.uk/advice/teenagers/health-wellbeing/self-harm Family Lives is a charity helping parents to deal with the changes that are a constant part of family life members .They provide professional, non-judgmental support and advice through a helpline, extensive advice on the website, befriending services, and parenting/relationship support groups. Nearly all of our services are accessible at no charge to parents 365 days a year


  • Pooky Knightsmith (2015) Self-Harm and Eating Disorders in Schools: A Guide to Whole School Support and Practical Strategies. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Keith Hawton and Karen Rodham (2006) By Their Own Young Hand: Deliberate Self-harm and Suicidal Ideas in Adolescents. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Carol Fitzpatrick (2012) A Short Introduction to Understanding and Supporting Children and Young People Who Self-Harm. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Understanding and responding to children and young people at risk of self-harm and suicide.(2014)CPFT https://www.cpft.nhs.uk/U%20R%20CYP%20at%20risk%20of%20selfharm%20and%20suicide%202014%20v1%20electronic.pdf


Suicidal feelings

Young people may experience complicated thoughts and feelings about wanting to end their own lives. Some young people never act on these feelings though they may openly discuss and explore them, while other young people die suddenly from suicide apparently out of the blue.

See Section D and Risk flowchart for guidance on responding to risk and getting support

Online support


  • Keith Hawton and Karen Rodham (2006) By Their Own Young Hand: Deliberate Selfharm and Suicidal Ideas in Adolescents. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers
  • Terri A.Erbacher, Jonathan B. Singer and Scott Poland (2015) Suicide in Schools: A Practitioner’s Guide to Multi-level Prevention, Assessment, Intervention, and Postvention. New York: Routledge

Guidance and advice documents

Mental Health and Behaviour in Schools. The Department of Education (2016) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/508847/Menta l_Health_and_Behaviour_-_advice_for_Schools_160316.pdf

Supporting mental health in schools and colleges. Department for education. (Aug 2017) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supporting-mental-health-in-schools-andcolleges

Counselling in schools: a blueprint for the future - departmental advice for school staff and counsellors. Department for Education (2015) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/counselling-in-schools

Teacher Guidance: Preparing to teach about mental health and emotional wellbeing PSHE Guide funded by the Dept of Education.( 2015 ) https://www.pshe-association.org.uk/sites/default/files/Mental%20health%20guidance_0.pdf

Keeping children safe in education - statutory guidance for schools and colleges. Department of Education (2016) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/keeping-children-safe-in-education--2

Supporting pupils at school with medical conditions - statutory guidance for governing bodies of maintained schools and proprietors of academies in England. Department for Education (2014) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/supporting-pupils-at-school-with-medicalconditions--3

Special educational needs and disability (SEND) Department of Education and Department of Health ( 2014) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/send-code-of-practice-0-to-25

Future in mind – promoting, protecting and improving our children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing. A report produced by the Children and Young People’s Mental Health and Wellbeing Taskforce to examine how to improve mental health services for children and young people. Department of Health (2015) https://www.ncb.org.uk/sites/default/files/field/attachment/Future%20in%20Mind_Briefing.pdf

NICE guidance on social and emotional wellbeing in primary education (2008) https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ph12 This briefing summarises NICE's recommendations for local authorities and partner children aged under 5 years and all children in primary and secondary education

NICE guidance on social and emotional wellbeing in secondary education (2009) https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ph20 This guideline covers interventions to support social and emotional wellbeing among young people aged 11–19 years who are in full-time education

What works in promoting social and emotional wellbeing and responding to mental health problems in schools? National Children’s Bureau (2016) https://www.ncb.org.uk/sites/default/files/uploads/documents/Health_wellbeing_docs/ncb_fra mework_for_promoting_well-being_and_responding_to_mental_health_in_schools.pdf

A Whole school framework for emotional well-being and mental health. National Children’s Bureau ( 2015)


Improving the mental health of children and young people in England. PHE (2016) https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/improving-the-mental-health-of-children-andyoung-people

The Mental Health of Children and young people in England. PHE (2016) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/575632/Menta l_health_of_children_in_England.pdf

Promoting children and young people’s emotional health and wellbeing. A whole school and college approach. PHE (2015). https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/promoting-children-and-young-peoplesemotional-health-and-wellbeing

Children and young people’s mental health – the role of education. First joint report of the Education and health Committees of Session 2016-17 House of Commons. May 2017. https://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmhealth/849/849.pdf

What works in enhancing social and emotional skills development during childhood and adolescence? A review of the evidence on the effectiveness of school-based and outof-school programmes in the UK. Clarke et al 2015.‘ https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/411492/What_ works_in_enhancing_social_and_emotional_skills_development_during_childhood_and_ado lescence.pdf

Education, Education, Education, Mental Health. Supporting secondary schools to play a central role in early intervention. IPPR ( 2015 )

https://www.ippr.org/files/publications/pdf/education-education-mentalhealth_May2016.pdf?noredirect=1 https://www.scie.org.uk/children/parentalmentalhealthandchildwelfare/ https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-link-between-pupil-health-and-wellbeingand-attainment

Mentally Healthy Schools - Mentally Healthy Schools is a new website to help primary school staff support the mental health of their pupils https://www.mentallyhealthyschools.org.uk

Schools in Mind -  Schools in Mind is a free network for school staff and allied professionals which shares academic and clinical expertise regarding the wellbeing and mental health issues that affect schools. https://www.annafreud.org/what-we-do/schools-in-mind


Local Guidance Documents

Advice and guidance on information sharing can be found at:


Cambridgeshire Public Mental Health Strategy (2015-2018): https://democracy.cambridge.gov.uk/documents/s30639/Summary%20Public%20Mental%20%20Health%20Strategy.pdf

Cambridgeshire PSHE Service provides a range of resources to support whole school approaches to mental health. www.cccschoolservices.org.uk

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Local Transformation Plan for children’s and young people’s emotional/mental health and wellbeing. Refreshed 2016/2017: https://www.cambridgeshireandpeterboroughccg.nhs.uk/easysiteweb/getresource.axd?assetid=5578&type=0&servicetype=1

Assessment toolkit:


Cambridgeshire LSCB Threshold Document 2017 for descriptions of indicators of need and correlation with mental health needs:


Integrated Front Door (Safeguarding and early help): https://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/residents/working-together-children-families-andadults/how-we-work/children-and-families-services/integrated-front-door-safeguarding-andearly-help

Email - Early.helphub@cambridgeshire.gcsx.gov.uk (Early Help Assessment factsheet):       http://www.cambsdaat.org/wpcontent/uploads/2017/01/Early_Help_Assessment_factsheet.pdf    

Social Care/Think family:


The Thrive model see www.keepyourhead.com for local implementation, and www.annafreud.org/service-improvement/service-improvement-resources/thrive for the theoretical overview.

Cambridgeshire Children's Services Procedures: http://cambridgeshirecin.proceduresonline.com/chapters/p_assessments.htmll

SEND Specialist services:






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