Training on strategies to enhance well-being of students

As concerns mount over the mental health of school-going children, the Education and Skills Development Ministry has been working on ways to tackle the issue. To enhance mental health support in schools, a training on strategies to enhance the well-being of students was conducted recently in Chhukha.

Teachers, counsellors, wellbeing focal teachers and principals of 13 schools from the lower part of Chhukha attended the training in Phuentshogling.

Participants were trained in skills and strategies needed to help address mental health issues. They were also trained in mentor and mentee programme, peer helpers programme and screening for wellbeing and a safe school environment among others.

“Mental health is so important and, in this generation, we are giving more importance to mental health so that the mental health of our students is well-taken care of at the basic root level in the school. That way, we can provide early intervention and necessary support and services at the right time,” said Sushma Thapa, a facilitator.

“In the due process, this structure will support the students academically. This is because, as they learn, they are made to understand that stress, tension and sad emotions are part and parcel of their lives. And once that is built in their learning process, they will manage to cope up,” said Lhama Tshering, Principal DEO of Chhukha.

Moreover, the facilitators said, some programmes for tackling mental health issues which were in the higher and middle secondary schools are now being taken to the primary schools.

“One example can be the peer helper’s programme. We had this in the middle and higher secondary schools but now we are taking it to the primary schools. The peer helper’s programme is where the students come out as peer helpers to help their friends around. They are like the bridge between the counsellors or the focal teachers and the students,” said Sushma Thapa.

She added that, sometimes students don’t feel comfortable sharing issues with the teachers. In such situations, the facilitators said, the students will be able to share it with their friends.

The initiative of the appointment of well-being focal teachers in every school is also expected to help the students in addressing mental health issues.

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