• STV
  • MySTV

Over 50% of teachers say pressure impacted mental health

Seven out of 10 feel they lack the training to help pupils with mental health problems.

Teachers: Over half say work pressure affected mental health.
Teachers: Over half say work pressure affected mental health. PA

Seven out of 10 teachers feel they lack the training to help pupils with mental health problems - while just over half say the pressures of the job have contributed to them suffering from conditions such as depression and anxiety.

These were some of the findings of a survey carried out by the the Mental Health Foundation Scotland. A total of 51% of the teachers questioned said the job had either led to them developing a mental health problem, or had made an existing condition worse.

Meanwhile, when it came to helping pupils with mental health difficulties, 71% said they lacked the skills to do this - with only 13% of teachers having received mental health first aid training.

More than nine out of 10 (92%) want to see mental health training become a key part of teacher training courses - something which the Foundation is also calling for.

Figures show that some courses provide student teachers with as little as 15 hours of training in health and wellbeing over the four-year duration of their courses, it said.

However, 85% of the 418 primary and secondary teachers who were surveyed said if they were given more training in this area, it could help them better take care of their own emotional condition.

Toni Giugliano, policy manager at the Mental Health Foundation Scotland said: "It's remarkable that despite the growing number of children struggling to cope, mental health is still not a core part of the teacher training curriculum.

"Understanding child brain development, emotional vocabulary, self-esteem, self-care and managing stress are not extra-curricular - they should be core to what teachers learn from day one and throughout their careers to help them perform their job.

"Our research also shows that around half of teachers have struggled with their own mental health due to the pressures of their job. It's clear that investing in training will not only benefit pupils but will help teachers look after their own emotional health."
Toni Giugliano, policy manager at the Mental Health Foundation Scotland.

"Our research also shows that around half of teachers have struggled with their own mental health due to the pressures of their job. It's clear that investing in training will not only benefit pupils but will help teachers look after their own emotional health.

"Stress in adults can often leak into young minds, which is why addressing teacher mental health is equally important. We need a 'whole-school approach' where pupils and staff can support one another to thrive."

He added: "Unless we put more emphasis on nurturing emotionally literate, resilient children we'll continue to see more of them in crisis and distress."

The Scottish Children's Services Coalition, which campaigns to improve services for children and young people said the results of the survey were "no surprise".

A spokesman said: "While it has been estimated that around three children in every classroom have a mental health problem, it is disappointing to note that more than seven out of 10 teachers feel they lack the right training to help them address mental health concerns, with only 13% having received mental health first aid training.

"Like the Mental Health Foundation, we have long called for mental health training to be embedded in the teacher training curriculum and training should not just be restricted to teachers, but to all school staff, in a whole school approach to mental health."

A Scottish Government spokesman said mental health first aid training was being provided in schools, and that this year's Programme for Government had included a number of measures aimed at improving mental health care for young people.

He also stressed work was taking place to reduce teacher workloads.

The spokesman said: "Education is our number one priority and we recognise the pressures and challenges facing teachers, such as those highlighted by the Mental Health Foundation Scotland. That is why we have taken action to reduce teacher workloads, clarifying and simplifying the curriculum framework and removing unnecessary bureaucracy.

"As part of our Programme for Government we have committed to wide ranging actions to better support children's and young people's mental health and wellbeing.

"In addition to counselling through schools we have committed to further teachers and school staff understanding of mental health and wellbeing through specific resources to support training. This is in addition to the work already under way on the provision of mental health first aid training for schools."

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This must be at least 6 characters long.
ShowHide
This field is required. This must be at least 6 characters long.
You must be over 16 to join STV.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
We need this to check that you live in an STV region.
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid postcode
Would you like us to email you about our great shows and services from time to time?
We'll only send emails we think you'll like (see example) based on information you have supplied and shows you have watched on STV Player. For details on emails and advertising, see our STV & You page.
Would you like to receive emails from the Scottish Children's Lottery about draws, instant games and competitions?
We support the Scottish Children's Lottery (SCL), which is managed by our colleagues at STV ELM Ltd. You can find out more about the SCL on its website, including its Privacy Policy.

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, and understand our Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.