This year, we launched our inquiry into behaviour and mental health in schools. Coalition members have long been concerned that often children and young people get punished for behaviour that is linked to their mental health and special educational needs and disabilities, and that responses to behaviour, like the use of isolation rooms and exclusion, can further harm young people’s mental health.
Through the inquiry, we are exploring the links between mental health and behaviour, how current school policies on behaviour impact young people and their families, and what role a whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing can play in improving in behaviour, mental health, and wellbeing.
Early findings from the inquiry show that whilst young people and parents believe behaviour is linked to a young person’s mental health, they reported that schools are not always responsive to mental health needs when dealing with behaviour issues, and that behaviour management techniques used in schools are not effective in improving behaviour.
We look forward to publishing our full findings in Spring next year.