5. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to review mental health guidelines and supports in schools; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 14683/18 asked on 29 Mar 2018 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Deputy James Browne: I ask the Minister his plans to review mental health guidelines and supports in schools.
 ...

103. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the way in which implementation of the national guidelines on promoting positive mental health and suicide prevention in post-primary schools will be achieved; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 45525/17 asked on 26 Oct 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Department of Education and Skills supports a comprehensive and whole-school approach in schools to well-being promotion and positive mental health focusing on the entire school community, as well as groups and individual young people with identified need. This spans the curriculum in schools, whole-school ethos, quality of teaching, learning and assessment, student support and pastoral care, guidance counselling and the provision o...

351. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Education and Skills the mental health and counselling positions in secondary education and the annual cost of same; the way in which these are provided; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 37733/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department promotes a comprehensive and whole of school approach to the promotion of well-being and positive mental health. This approach considers the entire school community, as well as focussing on groups and individual young people with identified need.  This approach spans the curriculum in schools, whole-school ethos, quality of teaching, learning and assessment, student support, pastoral care, guidance counselling and the pro...

396. Deputy Joan Burton asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to develop mental health supports for second level students; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 38079/17 asked on 11 Sep 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department promotes a comprehensive and whole of school approach to the promotion of wellbeing and positive mental health. This approach considers the entire school community, as well as focusing on groups and individual young people with identified need.  This approach spans the curriculum in schools, whole-school ethos, quality of teaching, learning and assessment, student support, pastoral care, guidance counselling and the provis...

308. Deputy James Browne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the date on which the 300 hours of mental health classes to be provided to students in schools will commence as announced by the Minister of State with responsibility for mental health and older people on 3 December 2016; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 34389/17 asked on 13 Jul 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): The Department of Education and Skills is introducing a new Wellbeing programme for schools which forms part of the new Framework for Junior Cycle.  It will be introduced to first year students from September 2017.  Wellbeing is not just about mental health. It is about enhancing the physical, mental, emotional and social wellbeing of students. Therefore, the area of learning will include Physical Education (PE), Social, Personal and H...

176. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the progress being made on the national roll-out of the headstrong help seeking schools based substance misuse programme to all schools. (Question 30944/17 asked on 04 Jul 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): As the Deputy will be aware my Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with the broad range of problems, behavioural emotional and social. 
The processes span the curriculum in schools, whole-school ethos, quality of teaching, learning and assessment, student support and pastoral care and the provision of professional development fo...

136. Deputy Carol Nolan asked the Minister for Education and Skills if his Department has completed the assessment of supports to schools in the areas of mental health and social and emotional competence as outlined in the action plan for education; the findings of the assessment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 26132/17 asked on 31 May 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): I can inform the Deputy that a comprehensive review of the range of activities, which are relevant to the promotion of mental health and social emotional competence supported by my Department, has been completed. Informed by this work a DES Well-being Steering Group has been formed. This will review DES policy and provide a practice framework aligned with existing policy documents. It will also identify gaps in supports, engage in liai...

36. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills his views on whether the allocation of 300 classroom hours, rising to 400 hours, to the new wellness programme at junior cycle will reduce the number of hours schools can devote to science and language education in many schools that teach four classes per week in these subjects; and his further views on whether this is inconsistent with the ambition to improve science and language skills. (Question 24667/17 asked on 24 May 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Deputy Thomas Byrne: This question asks the Minister about school hours to be devoted to well-being. He is allocating 300 classroom hours, rising to 400, to the wellness programme at junior cycle. However, this will replace many existing classes and will reduce the amount of time that can be devoted to science and languages. People are concerned by that. It was reported at Christmas time that these were to be hours devoted to mental health but the reality is somewhat different.
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199. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills further to Parliamentary Questions Nos. 198, 206, 210, 211 and 212 of 9 May 2016, if he will clarify his reply that schools can plan a well-being programme without loss of teaching time for other subjects; and the way in which hours for the well-being programme will not impact on hours for other subjects. (Question 23187/17 asked on 16 May 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): Wellbeing and mental health are major priorities for my Department and are set out in the Action Plan for Education.  I believe that we must improve supports for students in this area, in the context of increasing concern around issues like suicide and online bullying.  That is why we have engaged in new activities in this area, including a series of consultations on the issue, and set out new policies in the area.
As part of this school...

143. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills further to Parliamentary Question No. 30 of 18 January 2017 and his commitment to review the proposal to have an advertisement for Pieta House services in school journals, if he will provide an update. (Question 7574/17 asked on 15 Feb 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department has considered this proposal. I agree that information on a comprehensive range of support services should be available to schools and young people in Ireland. I also believe that suicide prevention should form part of a balanced and age-appropriate strategy to promote mental health and wellbeing among children and young people.
I believe that an appropriate and immediate response should be triggered within schools and fr...

30. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will consider a proposal on behalf of mental health activists to make it mandatory for schools to insert an advertisement for Pieta House and its services on the inside cover of all school journals as a national mental health initiative and in particular to normalise accessing mental health services for young persons; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 2014/17 asked on 18 Jan 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett: It is a tragic fact, but a fact nonetheless, that this country has one of the highest rates of youth suicide in Europe and also a very high incidence of self-harm among young people. It is a complex, multifaceted problem to address. A very simple proposal has been made by supporters of Pieta House and endorsed by Pieta House itself. The proposers and people from Pieta House are here with us in the Gallery today. The proposal is that an advertisement for Pieta Hou...

38. Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan asked the Minister for Education and Skills his views on linking community and youth services in with schools in the local area in relation to awareness programmes dealing with the dangers of addiction to drugs, alcohol and gambling. (Question 1814/17 asked on 18 Jan 2017 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan: My question relates to the programmes being run by community organisations and the youth service to raise awareness of addiction to drugs, alcohol and gambling. Is there a role for linking those programmes to schools in local areas?
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44. Deputy Jim Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills to consider developing and issuing a circular to primary schools in order to incorporate weekly discussions on the issue of mental health and well-being in the classroom; to encourage the roll-out of basic awareness strategies such as story-telling and question and answer sessions, to promote a positive sense of health and well-being; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18217/16 asked on 28 Jun 2016 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools as part of an overall healthy lifestyle for our young people. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural, emotional and social.
My Department issued a circul...

102. Deputy Jim Daly asked the Minister for Education and Skills to develop and issue a circular to primary schools in order to incorporate weekly discussions on the issue of mental health and well-being in the classroom; to encourage the roll-out of basic awareness strategies such as story-telling and question and answer sessions to promote a positive sense of health and well-being; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 13996/16 asked on 01 Jun 2016 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Richard Bruton): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools as part of an overall healthy lifestyle for our young people. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural, emotional and social. My Department issued a circu...

701. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Minister for Education and Skills if a school-based programme focuses on the mental health and well-being of pupils; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 6816/16 asked on 14 Apr 2016 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools and provides support and resources in this area. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural emotional and social.
The process spans the curriculum in schools,...

533. Deputy Joe Costello asked the Minister for Education and Skills the mental health services available for children and young persons, particularly those with special education needs; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 45165/15 asked on 15 Dec 2015 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools and provides support and resources in this area. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural emotional and social.
The process spans the curriculum in schools...

530. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Education and Skills if funding is available to assist schools to pay for the delivery of programmes on positive mental health and emotional health, given the extent of such issues among adolescents; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43983/15 asked on 08 Dec 2015 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools and provides support and resources in this area. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural emotional and social.
The process spans the curriculum in schools,...

1317. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Education and Skills the elements of the standard curriculum at secondary level that have been implemented to tackle the high rate of teenage suicide; her plans to make such a policy form a mandatory part of the curriculum; her views that there are lessons to be learned from a comparative programme designed to address teen pregnancy rates; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 31855/15 asked on 22 Sep 2015 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): I am aware of the serious problem of youth suicide and of the role that schools can play in prevention. 
My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in both primary and post-primary schools. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with a broad range of problems, behavioural emotional...

124. Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan asked the Minister for Education and Skills the current procedure for schools that have concerns regarding pupils in need of psychological services and referral to child and adolescent mental health services. (Question 8808/15 asked on 03 Mar 2015 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): My department has provided guidelines to post-primary, and more recently to primary schools, offering practical assistance and advice on the development of structures to promote positive mental health in schools and in assisting pupils with mental health difficulties.
The guidelines advise that in the event of pupils presenting with mental health difficulties which are above and beyond the school’s capacity and ability to support, school...

471. Deputy Colm Keaveney asked the Minister for Education and Skills the total amount spent on promoting positive mental health and-or resilience training in primary and secondary level schools, detailed separately, in each year from 2012 to 2014; the amount planned to be spent on such measures in 2015; the guidance that has been provided to schools on how to implement these measures; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 8858/15 asked on 03 Mar 2015 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Jan O’Sullivan): My Department is strongly supportive of the promotion of positive mental health awareness in schools. The Department adopts a holistic and integrated approach to supporting the work of schools in promoting positive mental health and to supporting those with the broad range of problems, behavioural emotional and social. 
The processes span the curriculum in schools, whole-school ethos, quality of teaching, learning and assessment, studen...

286. Deputy Michael McCarthy asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will provide an update on the drafting of guidelines for schools in relation to mental health in the State’s education system; if he will provide a provisional timeline on the planned publication of the guidelines and further actions that will follow from same; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18924/13 asked on 23 Apr 2013 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): I can inform the Deputy that, in conjunction with my colleague Minister of State Kathleen Lynch, I was pleased to announce at the end of January this year, the publication of the Well-Being in Post-Primary Schools – Guidelines for Mental Health Promotion and Suicide Prevention. The Guidelines have been developed to bring coherence to and build upon the multitude of practices that are already in place in schools to promote well-being. The...

7. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he intends to provide specialist training in the area of mental health for teachers and principal teachers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17559/13 asked on 17 Apr 2013 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

(Deputy Sean Sherlock): I propose to take Questions Nos. 7, 34, 48 and 59 together.
The promotion of student well-being and positive mental health strategies in schools is a key aim of my Department. Accordingly, the Minister, Deputy Quinn, has directed my Department’s support services to review and prioritise support for schools on the guidelines for mental health promotion which he launched recently with my colleague, the Minister of State, Deputy Kathleen Lynch. The guidelines bring togethe...

34. Deputy Charlie McConalogue asked the Minister for Education and Skills his plans to provide specialist training in the area of mental health for teachers and principal teachers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17544/13 asked on 17 Apr 2013 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

(Deputy Sean Sherlock): I propose to take Questions Nos. 7, 34, 48 and 59 together.
The promotion of student well-being and positive mental health strategies in schools is a key aim of my Department. Accordingly, the Minister, Deputy Quinn, has directed my Department’s support services to review and prioritise support for schools on the guidelines for mental health promotion which he launched recently with my colleague, the Minister of State, Deputy Kathleen Lynch. The guidelines bring togethe...

48. Deputy Éamon Ó Cuív asked the Minister for Education and Skills the training measures he will put in place to help teachers deal with mental health issues in pupils; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17551/13 asked on 17 Apr 2013 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

(Deputy Sean Sherlock): I propose to take Questions Nos. 7, 34, 48 and 59 together.
The promotion of student well-being and positive mental health strategies in schools is a key aim of my Department. Accordingly, the Minister, Deputy Quinn, has directed my Department’s support services to review and prioritise support for schools on the guidelines for mental health promotion which he launched recently with my colleague, the Minister of State, Deputy Kathleen Lynch. The guidelines bring togethe...

59. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Education and Skills the training measures he will put in place to help teachers deal with mental health issue in pupils; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17536/13 asked on 17 Apr 2013 - Schools Mental Health Strategies)

(Deputy Sean Sherlock): I propose to take Questions Nos. 7, 34, 48 and 59 together.
The promotion of student well-being and positive mental health strategies in schools is a key aim of my Department. Accordingly, the Minister, Deputy Quinn, has directed my Department’s support services to review and prioritise support for schools on the guidelines for mental health promotion which he launched recently with my colleague, the Minister of State, Deputy Kathleen Lynch. The guidelines bring togethe...