According to the recently published Lancashire Children and Young People’s Resilience, Emotional and Mental Health and Well-Being Transformation Plan for 2015-2020, it is recognised that:
The newly published Transformation Plan notes that:
This is important but shocking information. In the I Matter Project however we contend that there is also a key gap in models for practice in child and family work. We argue in particular that in spite of the rhetoric of evidence-based practice there is no practice model in child and family work that adequately connects up the relationship between adult well-being, child well-being and development. There is also a gap in models of service delivery that can respond to the sheer scale of the current unmet needs.
What we think is therefore needed is some big picture innovative thinking about what is really underpinning the rise in child mental health difficulties, and some lateral thinking about how the difficulties might be more meaningfully addressed.
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Sometimes when I start talking about the I Matter Project I can feel a little embarrassed. The thing is, the issues the project is addressing are really not rocket science. It is not as if I am speaking about things that people don't already sort of know.
The difficulty is that ideas and issues that seem quite straightforward, are not actually happening when it comes to practice. Everyone knows for example that parenting is important when it comes to helping children, but parent education is not anyone's primary business As a result, what should be happening, is not actually happening.
So here are 6 reasons that your school or service needs a parent education strategy:
i) Mental health outcomes are massively impacted by parenting competence
ii) Educational outcomes are massively impacted by parenting competence
iii) Challenging behaviour and Youth offending outcomes are massively impacted by parenting competence
iv) Parenting lack of confidence is widespread
v) Hoping that 'someone' will address the parenting issues means that you have left responsibility for a massive factor that will impact on your own outcomes to someone else.
vi) Anything less than a clear strategy is unlikely to make a dint on the scale of the unmet needs
Hope that is enough to get you thinking. If you would like to join our Action Research Network to explore these issues in more depth with other professionals, you can get more information by clicking here
Dr Cathy Betoin
Dr Cathy Betoin
The I Matter Prof Blog:
How do we improve the educational and mental health outcomes of our children?
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