In Chennai, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur, and seven other districts, a comprehensive programme will be introduced on a pilot basis this month to address mental health issues among teenage students in government and government-aided schools. Following the pilot study, the four-year programme will begin to be implemented throughout TN the following year.
CHENNAI: Starting this month, a comprehensive programme will be implemented on a pilot basis in Chennai, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur, and seven other districts to address the mental health concerns that are prevalent among teenage students in government and government-aided schools. Following the pilot study, the four-year programme will be implemented throughout the state the following year.
Classes IX through XII students will be screened, given relaxation exercises, life skills instruction, games, and, if necessary, professional counselling. Additionally, teachers will receive training on how to deal with misbehaving kids. “Each district’s 25 schools with behavioural problems will be identified by chief educational officers. Two instructors from each school will receive training in mental health, dealing with emotional problems in kids, preventing substance misuse, and fostering a pleasant learning environment” said J Shyam Sundar, Director, The Institute of Social Education (ISE). In collaboration with Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan, a non-governmental organisation, ISE will establish a district unit with a social worker and a certified counsellor.
High levels of stress among teachers might have a negative effect in the classroom. The programme will include mentorship and workplace wellness programmes for instructors. Before they are accepted, applicants will be screened. “The goal is to ensure that every child has access to school counselling services under which they will, among other things, be taught physical activity and the arts,” he continued.
Bullying and child abuse are also predicted to be prevented by this. “The entire procedure—from filing complaints to receiving counselling—will be kept private. Teachers and counsellors will work with law enforcement to prevent youngsters from getting access to or buying narcotics,” said Shyam Sundar.
In order to raise awareness, the initiative also seeks to involve parents and the neighbourhood. Along with hiring qualified counsellors, it also intends to start offering phone counselling to teachers and students in need. Following this, researchers intend to create an extensive operational guideline for handling mental health difficulties.