CCEA launches social media campaign to mark Children’s Mental Health Week

Published: 07/02/2022, 8:00am
Children's Mental Health Week 2022

The Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment (CCEA) is marking Children’s Mental Health Week by running a social media campaign highlighting resources available to help parents, students and teachers when young people are feeling stressed, anxious or suffering from low self-esteem.

Children’s Mental Health Week launched today, Monday February 7, is promoting children’s and young people’s mental health with the tag line ‘Growing Together’ in efforts to highlight that growing is not just about getting taller or stronger physically but that it is also about growing emotionally and improving mental health and wellbeing.

Throughout the week CCEA is raising awareness of the importance of learners’ mental health and calling attention to its Wellbeing Hub. The hub hosts range of primary and post primary resources for teachers and young people including took kits to support their skills and preventative strategies to cope with the normal stresses of life and school. There is also a dedicated Summer 2022 Hub which includes a Student Area with useful videos and guides as well as a Mental Health and Wellbeing section.

One in eight young people in Northern Ireland experience anxiety and depression - 25% higher than in other parts of the United Kingdom, according to the NI Youth Wellbeing Survey. Additionally, one in 10 young people are experiencing problems with their feelings, with many more struggling with challenges from bullying to bereavement, reports Northern Ireland’s Mental Health Strategy 2021–2031.

The Northern Ireland curriculum recognises and promotes the need to develop social and emotional skills across the different areas of learning and, in particular, through Personal Development and Mutual Understanding (PDMU) and Learning for Life and Work.

"It’s okay to admit that you are feeling down or stressed. Feelings of anxiety and depression can affect us at different times in our lives,” said Esther Martin, Business Manager, Curriculum and Assessment, CCEA.

Ms Martin explained that growing good habits to support emotional wellbeing can help students cope with the challenges of life and learning.

"We recognise that education can have a positive influence on well-being and poor well-being can act as a barrier to learning and may limit potential. Effective curriculum delivery can help improve student wellbeing - whether at the start of their educational journey, during exams or as they move into further education. It is important for students to know they are not alone and to voice any concerns to parents, teachers or friends and access help if they need it."

Here is some advice from the experts:

Where can I go for help?

If you are student who is feeling anxious and stressed and have asked for help – good for you! Accepting help is the only way to progress and succeed.

To support you and your parents during the examination period, CCEA and other partner organisations have a range of resources available - all of which are free and confidential.

These include:

Media Enquiries

Media enquiries to CCEA MarComms. You can contact us by email at [email protected] or call 028 9026 1200.