Mental Health Support Programme set for Oldham Schools

Date published: 28 September 2020

Young people in schools across Oldham will soon be supported by two new dedicated Mental Health Support Teams (MHST).

Funding has been secured to implement two MHST which will be able to support around 40% of pupils across Oldham. Project work will begin soon in order for the teams to be in place and operational by Spring Term 2021. NHS Oldham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will be working alongside Oldham Council, Oldham Opportunity Area, Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) and NHS Mental Health services to deliver the project.

The service promotes the early detection and prevention of mental health issues across the schools population by providing direct, ongoing support around mental health and wellbeing, including face-to-face support for pupils with mild to moderate mental health needs.

The teams will also deliver training for school staff to help them support their pupils; to encourage good mental wellbeing and resilience across the school and provide guidance around issues such as bullying and coping with exam stress.

The teams will work alongside other staff and professionals who already provide mental health support in schools such as:

School nurses

Educational psychologists

School counsellors

Voluntary and community organisations

Social workers

About the service, NHS Oldham CCG Chief Operating Officer Mike Barker said: “It is fantastic news for Oldham that we have been able to secure the funding for such an important programme for our children and young people.

“When it comes to mental health, early intervention and noticing the warning signs is paramount. Introducing this service will enable staff working closest to pupils to recognise and act on any early signs they may see.

“This will allow the child or young person as much time and support as possible for them to build the important coping mechanisms they need in order to manage their mental health and wellbeing.”

Councillor Shaid Mushtaq, Oldham Council Portfolio Lead for Education, said: “Oldham is leading the way in GM and beyond in tackling mental health issues among our young people and this is another significant piece of work that will benefit them.

“Schools and colleges already do a tremendous amount of work in this area and this extra funding and resource will help them do even more.”


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