Posted: 15 November, 2018 at 3:31 pm

John to take head teachers to meet Schools Minister over mental health crisis

MP John Healey and local head teachers will meet the Schools Minister next week over the mental health crisis in Rotherham’s schools.

The MP will take the heads of Rawmarsh Community School, Kilnhurst Primary and Rotherham Aspire to meet Education Minister, Nick Gibb on Monday to press for greater Government support to help schools deal with the mounting mental health concerns they have to handle on a daily basis.

It follows a survey of schools by John across the Wentworth and Dearne constituency in which three quarters of secondary schools and 80 per cent of primaries reported a rising severity of students’ problems.

John said “There’s been great support for my report locally, including the Advertiser’s Class Action campaign, and this is the chance for our Rotherham head teachers to take their concerns to the heart of government. I want to make sure the Minister hears for himself about the mental health problems students suffer and the pressures schools face in providing help.

“My report shows we have a mental health crisis in our schools now, yet funding promised by the chancellor in the latest budget is not due in full for another five years.

“Together we will tackle the minister on speeding up national plans for schools mental health teams and making the money available much faster.”

Rotherham Aspire head teacher Leanne Camaish said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for us to get across the real concerns that schools are facing on a daily basis when it comes to dealing with mental health concerns.

“School budgets have been cut and are tight right now, so it is clear that more funding is needed to help deal with the ever increasing concerns around student mental health.”

The MP has also pledged to press the Minister to back Rotherham’s bid to NHS England to become a national trailblazer for mental health support in schools. If successful it would bring £1.6 million for the borough over three years.

John met with Rotherham Council’s Chief Executive, Rotherham CCG, RDaSH and local head teachers last week and all pledge to work more closely to improve mental health support in schools.