Foundation responds to children's mental health green paper

Today the government published its green paper on transforming children and young people's mental health provision.

Commenting, Mark Rowland, a Director at the Mental Health Foundation, said:

"We have needed a sea-change in thinking for a long time and this is a sign the government is listening. Half of adult mental health problems are established by the age of 14, meaning that schools are the real front lines in tackling mental health issues.

"But it does not go far enough. This issue is too important to leave one person in each school, it needs all teachers and students to understand what they can do to understand and protect their mental health. This cannot become a tick-box exercise.

"We must also address the issue of inequality. Schools in the poorest areas have the greatest prevalence of mental health problems. These proposals will need to ensure that schools with greater needs and disadvantage get proportionally greater assistance.

"We also know there is significant support among parents for raising awareness about mental health in schools. Our research shows 7 out of 10 parents agree that all young people should be taught about mental health at school. We need to see investment in a national and compulsory mental health literacy scheme across all schools."