New pupil support project at Bell Baxter
A Fife high school has launched a new project to support its young students – with the help of other pupils.
Bell Baxter High School is working with Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) to train up a team of pupils and staff, becoming the first school in the Kingdom to work with the organisation on an initiative like this.
The team will be available during school days for pupils to visit and receive emotional support.
“We are setting up a team of staff and pupils that will act as a frontline to support the pupil’s emotional wellbeing,” said principal teacher of guidance, Niall Duncan.
The eight staff and a number of pupils are being given training on the common issues which might be brought up and how to listen.
When the service starts, pupils will be able to drop in and get support and advice, although Mr Duncan said that the service will be for usual school problems, rather than “heavy issues”.
In the past, these issues would have been dealt with by pupil support.
“This is a peer support approach with support from the teachers,” added Mr Duncan.
“Once the training finishes, we’ll start a lunch time club. Every day ambassadors will be at the space. And there will always be staff with the pupils in the base.
“I think the pupils will be able to talk about things with the other pupils that might be more difficult to talk about with staff.
“We’re also developing our emotional wellbeing policy with the young people.”