Wise Up to Wellbeing in Schools

The wellbeing of students is as important as academic achievement. The education system should reflect this. Over 10,000 of you signed our open letter to Theresa May.

Over 10,000 people signed our open letter to Theresa May (below), calling on her to urgently rebalance the education system. 

The letter was sent to Theresa May on 21st April 2017. 

Due to the announcement of a General Election, we are now calling on all the political parties to make this a priority in their election manifestos. 

You can show your support for our ongoing Wise Up campaign, and sign up to receive updates, by filling in the form opposite.

If you would like to support the campaign as a school or another organisation, then please email amber.cowburn@youngminds.org.uk to find out how you can get involved.

We're very grateful for support from our fantastic Wise Up media partner, The Sun’s Fabulous Magazine.


21st April 2017

Dear Prime Minister,

As you have rightly acknowledged, there is a mental health crisis in our classrooms. 

Children and young people face a huge range of pressures - from exams to cyberbullying, from body image to finding a job when they finish education. An estimated three children in every class have a mental health condition, one in four experience emotional distress, and rates of self-harm are skyrocketing.

While it is not the role of schools to replace the specialist support that mental health services provide, they can and should play a crucial role in developing the skills young people need to cope and flourish in today’s world. But at the moment the education system is fundamentally unbalanced, with an over-emphasis on exams and too little focus on student wellbeing. 

Recent research found that 82% of teachers think the focus on exams has become disproportionate to the overall wellbeing of their students. Parents agree: 73% would prioritise the happiness of students over exam results when choosing a school. 

We want to see:

  • wellbeing to be fundamental to education and school performance
  • more recognition of good work schools are doing on wellbeing, and of how they are continuing to improve
  • mental health to be an integral part of training for all teachers
  • proper funding for wellbeing initiatives in schools

We urge you to rebalance the education system so that the wellbeing of students is as important as academic achievement in schools.

Find out more about the campaign at www.youngminds.org.uk/wiseup