Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Two new school support resources launched

Associate Minister of Education, Jan Tinetti and Associate Minister of Education, Kelvin Davis have today launched two new resources to support wellbeing, and the teaching and learning of mental health education in schools and kura.

“Students who are happy and healthy learn better. These resources ensure that students have their identity valued, and feel safe and confident in themselves and in their school,” Ms Tinetti said.

She said the overall aim of Mental Health Education: A guide for teachers, leaders and schools boards is to enable schools to deliver effective, high-quality mental health education programmes to students.

“There has been an extensive consultation process with diverse communities, government departments, health education organisations, and youth representative groups during the development.”

“The resource will help schools plan mental health education programmes that promote effective and empowering approaches to mental health education for all students, including Māori, those with Pacific backgrounds, all sexualities and gender identities, those from migrant and refugee backgrounds, and students with disabilities,” Ms Tinetti said.

Being launched today, by Associate Minister of Education Kelvin Davis, is Te Oranga Mauri – Te Hā o Hinepūtehue: He Puna Oranga Mauri mā ngā Mokopuna – a reo Māori resource that affirms existing successful practice in kura, offering a new way of aligning with regenerating ancestral practice by increasing awareness of your own mauri, the mauri of others and its impacts.

Te Oranga Mauri is grounded in mātauranga Māori and kōrero tuku iho and meant for tumuaki, tumuwhakahaere and kaiako to support teaching and learning throughout the marau levels. The resource has been created by several key mātanga, subject matter experts specifically from Te Ao Hauora, Te Ao Māori and supported by Ngā Āhuatanga Ako,” Minister Davis says.

“These documents have been developed in response to significant global and national changes, which are causing major challenges for ākonga, whānau and schools. There has been a dramatic increase in the number of young people in Aotearoa New Zealand reporting serious mental health challenges. It was noted in the 2018 government inquiry into mental health and addiction that young people are asking for guidance on mental health and how to look after themselves and their friends,” he said.

“Mental health education is primarily about learning rather than about solving mental health or public health problems. When students learn the skills to support their own mental health and that of others, they have the building blocks to boost their own resilience and experience enhanced wellbeing. A focus on wellbeing has been part of the Government’s work since before the COVID-19 pandemic and these guides provide us with another opportunity to support young New Zealanders,” Ms Tinetti added.

The new mental health education guide is available here: hpe.tki.org.nz/guidelines-and-policies/mental-health-education.

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