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UK schools inform new national study into pupil and teacher mental wellbeing

SCHOOLS across the country are benefitting from unique insights into pupil and teacher mental wellbeing, thanks to an initiative from Devon based Monkey Mind.

Mindfulness coach and psychotherapist, Graham McDowell, has launched Monkey Mind Wellbeing Systems for Schools, enabling school leaders to measure, understand and improve student and teacher mental wellbeing via their online survey system and an engaging online mental wellbeing eLearning system.

To celebrate its launch, Monkey Mind is inviting all UK schools to run a free survey to gain unique insights into how their teachers and pupils are thinking and feeling and this anonymous data will then contribute towards a nationwide study of mental wellbeing in schools.

After working in local schools and discovering that mental wellbeing levels were often lower than among his private clients, Graham developed Monkey Mind to provide schools with simple and effective systems to measure mental wellbeing levels and improve them.

Graham says: “We now live in a world with 24/7 connectivity and endless mental stimulation which is reflected in the rise of mental health issues. But, as a society, we can choose to improve things which is why we are offering every school in the country access to systems to measure mental wellbeing levels and improve them through simple and effective education and training.”

Susan Hills, Vice Principal, South Dartmoor Community College, says: “At a time when teachers’ wellbeing is high on the agenda, I’ve been able to be part of building a wellbeing community at my school, that takes mental health seriously; the training means we can offer support in maintaining mental health but also provide some early help when it’s needed.” 

Monkey Mind is launching its Online Academy later this year with engaging resources to enable teachers, students and parents to understand what mental wellbeing is and learn how to achieve it at their own pace. Teachers also use system content to create and deliver PSHE lessons.

Emma Wilson-Downes, Assistant Headteacher Student Support at Thomas Gainsborough School says: “In terms of the student issues, Monkey Mind has allowed students to raise a concern that they may not have felt confident to raise face to face and has allowed us to discreetly offer additional support or a welfare check to the students. We have also linked these students into slots in our wellbeing drop in sessions.”

Monkey Mind mental wellbeing systems are suitable for nurseries, primary schools and secondary schools although currently the survey is only for KS 3 and older. All UK schools can register for the free Monkey Mind mental wellbeing survey and gain immediate access to their dashboard on Monkey Mind’s website

Access to the ‘one off’ mental wellbeing survey is free. Schools can enhance their surveys through customisable analytics with paid-for subscriptions from £95 per year. All results from the free surveys will be anonymised and used as part of a new national study into mental wellbeing in schools. Data from paid accounts is NOT used in the national study.

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