Mandatory Mental Health First Aid Training for all teachers

The group discussion about support in schools at Muirhouse Millennium Centre on Monday 26th November 2018 suggested that all teachers should be trained to support young people with mental health needs.

The young people felt that if teachers are required to do physical first aid training, such as CPR, they should also be required to take part in mental health first aid training. Mental health first aid training would enable teachers to “see the signs” of mental ill health and know how to approach young people they feel might need support; be aware of mental health impacts of trauma and know about other issues that could impact on a young person’s mental wellbeing; and enable teachers to signpost young people to get support.

Ways of achieving this included combining physical and mental health first aid training and providing this combined first aid training as part of the initial teacher training program with refresher courses throughout a teaching career.

The group also felt that mental health training should be integrated as part of general first aid training and should be made available to teachers, young people, GPs, or anyone that wanted to support others.

The group felt that if such mental health first aid training was made easily available across the public and third sector then people at risk of experiencing difficulties with mental health would have additional opportunities to get advice, support and signposting to activities and treatments that promote wellbeing.

For example, if a young person worked with a housing officer, that officer could be trained to notice warning signs and point a young person in the right direction.

Why the contribution is important

Upskilled teachers (and other professionals who work with young people would ensure more young people had easier access to support and it could help save lives. One young person noted that “you are more likely to need to provide mental health first aid than to provide CPR”, so teachers must be given the support and training to help young people in areas related to mental health.

by Muirhouse2611 on December 06, 2018 at 03:56PM

Current Rating

4.75
Average score : 4.7
Based on : 4 votes