Emotional health & wellbeing

Across the PEP there is a clear-shared intention to adopt a whole system approach to developing and transforming the support for children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing.  Fundamental to this approach is the importance of partnership working and that social and emotional mental health becomes ‘everyone’s business’ in the same way as safeguarding has become ‘everyone’s business’ across Portsmouth.

Our Vision

We want all children and young people in Portsmouth to enjoy good emotional wellbeing and mental health.  The ways in which we will achieve this vision is by:

  • Establishing a clearly understood needs-led model of support for children and young people with Social Emotional Mental Health (SEMH) difficulties, which will provide access to the right help at the right time through all stages of their emotional and mental health development.
  • Ensuring that children and young people have access to a range of early help in supporting their emotional wellbeing and mental health needs which will prevent difficulties escalating and requiring specialist mental health services.
  • Supporting professionals working with children and young people to have a shared understanding of Social Emotional Mental Health and to promote resilience and emotional wellbeing in their work.

For details about what we have achieved in 2017-2019 and our plans moving forward see our SEMH Strategy 0-25 here.


SEMH Partnership

Our SEMH Partnership brings together expertise from CAMHS, School Nursing, Education Psychology, Multi-Agency Support Service and Early Help.

We are working together to support colleagues in schools to meet the needs of:

  • pupils at risk of, or already being excluded
  • pupils on reduced timetables
  • chronically and persistently absent pupils
  • pupils at risk of, or already experiencing a range of concerning emotional welfare issues and behaviours e.g. anxiety, self-harm
  • pupils at risk of harm

The offer to schools from these services, including contact details, can be found here.

Training for all school staff to raise awareness of mental health can be found on the Portsmouth Learning Gateway (PLG).

Mental Health and Wellbeing Awareness Training

Mental ill-health and poor emotional wellbeing can affect us all. Staff working in schools support some of the most vulnerable people in our society so it is important to be able to recognise possible signs mental ill-health or poor emotional well-being in ourselves and others and to take action where it is necessary.

An online training course is available on the Portsmouth Learning Gateway (PLG). This course describes:

  • The difference between emotional wellbeing, mental health and mental ill health.
  • How changes in behaviour could be communicating difficulties with emotional wellbeing, mental health and/or mental ill health.
  • The role of school staff in supporting pupils with these needs.
  • Where to go to get extra support for staff and pupils.

You need to login to the PLG in order to find and complete this course. If you require a login please contact us.


Service Guide – Professionals outlines the services available and how to access them.

Professionals are also encouraged to contact the CAMHS Single Point of Access (SPA) for advice and professional consultation.

Portsmouth City Council offers a variety of packages to support the delivery of Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE). For more information and to purchase see the traded services website.

Family Hubs
Family hubs
run across Portsmouth and now provide support to children and families up to the age of 19, including summer holiday programmes. For more details see the council’s website.

The Portsmouth Local Offer is for children, young people and their families with a special educational need or disability

Solent NHS have A–Z information sheets for parents/ carers and young people.

Restorative Schools
All Portsmouth schools are encouraged to be restorative schools. Information and guidance about becoming a restorative school is attached here.

U Matter is a service for young people aged 8-18 who lives in the Portsmouth area (postcodes PO1 to PO6). It is a service that offers early help with problems before they get too big.

Under 18’s Mental Health Guide

Wessex Healthier Together: Free health advice for parents. For information and advice to help you deal with an unwell child visit www.what0-18.nhs.uk.

Early Help and Prevention
The integrated Early Help and Prevention Service has been established to provide targeted support for those families who need help to strengthen their functioning and improve outcomes, but haven’t met the threshold for statutory service provision. Embedding Early Help for vulnerable young people in education outlines the relationship between schools and Early Help.

Simon Says provide support for loss and bereavement. They are able to help schools with: training, advice on individual cases and situations, emergency visits to school following a traumatic death, workshops for pupils as part of PSHE and setting up a bereavement support group.

Portsmouth Young Carers Service: Focused Work with Schools and Colleges
Portsmouth Young Carers Service are currently offering all Secondary Schools and Colleges in Portsmouth the opportunity to book a range of ‘Team Around the Worker’ support. This will initially take the form of free staff training sessions, together with opportunities for the delivery of assemblies and support to set up Young Carers Groups within our secondary provisions. More information can be found here.

Case study: Play, Youth & Community (PYC) service

National Case Studies and Additional Resources

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) has published guidance, Improving Behaviour in Schools, which aims to support senior leaders to promote positive behaviour in schools, based on the best available evidence.

Anna Freud Centre
Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families is a children’s charity dedicated to providing training & support for child mental health services. Schools in Mind is a free network for school staff and allied professionals which shares academic and clinical expertise regarding the wellbeing and mental health issues that affect schools. The network provides a trusted source of up-to-date and accessible information and resources that school leaders, teachers and support staff can use to support the mental health and wellbeing of the children and young people in their care.

Charlie Waller Memorial Trust 
The CWMT provides training and resources including downloadable booklets for professionals, parents and young people.

Diversity Role Models
Diversity Role Models works with senior leadership teams and staff to embed LGBT+ inclusion into their school’s policies, practices, curriculum and culture. Their Pathways to LGTB+ inclusion project, which is fully funded by the Government Equalities Office, has been designed by education experts and teachers to support schools in starting their journey towards being LGBT+ inclusive.

Effective Parental Engagement-a handbook for schools
The Impact on learning of parents who are well engaged in their child’s education has been shown to be one of the most significant factors open to the influence of schools. United Learning has produced this Parental Engagement Handbook to help schools maximise this impact. It contains a review of the research literature pointing to the elements of successful practise in this area, case studies exemplifying these from within the group, and a series of practical tools and information to support parents in working with their children.

“Let’s Talk” …about self-harm
A self-harm management toolkit for educational settings. This toolkit has been developed in response to requests from schools and is part of the work for the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Transformation Plan, ‘Open up, Reach out’, for Southend, Essex and Thurrock.

Managing self-harm: Practical guidance and toolkit for schools in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly
A guide containing latest information and resources to help recognise the signs, risks and support available for anyone who works within education when dealing with students who self-harm or are at risk of intentionally harming themselves. Developed at the request of teachers, nurses, mental health professionals, (doctors and nurses), known as Cornwall Multi-agency Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health Board.

Online Training

Mind Ed is a free educational resource on children and young people’s mental health for all adults.

MindEd for Professionals and Volunteers offers free and completely open access online education in over 300 topics. The e-learning is applicable to a wide range of learners across the health, social care, education, criminal justice and community settings. The aim is to provide simple, clear guidance on children and young people’s mental health, wellbeing and development to any adult working with children, young people and families, to help them support the development of young healthy minds.

MindEd for Families is useful for parents or carers who are concerned about their child or who want some hints and tips on parenting? It has online advice and information from trusted sources and will help parents and carers to understand and identify early issues and best support your child.

Public Health England have produced a toolkit for schools and colleges to measure and monitor children and young people’s mental wellbeing: a toolkit for schools and colleges.

Stonewall produce a range of good practice guidance, resources and toolkits for schools on LGBT inclusion issues, available here. Locally, we have produced Portsmouth Trans Inclusion Guidance for Schools and Colleges.

Talk to Frank give an A to Z list of substances explains appearance and use, effects, chances of getting hooked, health risks and UK law. Includes information on peer pressure.

Think U Know is a guide to internet safety and safe surfing for children, young people, parents/carers and professionals.

Young Minds provide audit tools, training materials to develop academic resilience and other resources.



Bullying remains one of the top concerns that parents have about their children’s safety and wellbeing; preventing and tackling bullying is fundamental to promoting wellbeing. Portsmouth’s Anti Bullying Guidance and Resource Pack for Schools (January 2018) provides a comprehensive range of information, resources and contacts to help schools develop effective anti-bullying practices. Further information is also available from the Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Partnership.

We are currently running a competition to design a new front and back cover for the Anti-Bullying Guidance and Resource Pack for Schools. This could be a drawing, painting or a digital image / design. Further information is provided in the attached flyer. Please note the deadline of Friday 20th December 2019. For more information please contact [email protected].

Anti-Bullying Week 11th-15th November 2019

Resources are available to download from:

Anti Bullying Alliance

Anti-Bullying work needs to be ongoing as part of a whole school. Events such as anti-bullying week are a good way to further raise the profile of this work.

Portsmouth’s Anti Bullying Strategy 2018 – 2020 has been recently revised and approved by the Anti-Bullying Steering Group.

Stonewall, in partnership with Childnet, have produced a Staying Safe Online guide which is available for download here. The guide covers practical strategies to best support all children and young people online, including those who identify as LGBT.


Portsmouth’s Anti Bullying Guidance and Resource Pack for Schools (January 2018) contains guidance on preventing and responding to homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying. We have also produced Portsmouth Trans Inclusion Guidance for Schools and Colleges.

The importance of creating a supportive environment where young people can feel safe and be themselves is illustrated by this account from one of the Peer Mentors at the 4U project.


The Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Partnership
Safeguarding children and young people is everyone’s responsibility.

The Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Partnership (PSCP) replaces the Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Board (PSCB) and will:

  • Develop policies and procedures for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children in the area of the authority.
  • Communicate to persons and bodies in Portsmouth the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
  • Monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of what is done by the PSCP partners.
  • Participate in the planning and commissioning of services for children in the area of Portsmouth to ensure that they take safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children into account.
  • Undertake reviews of serious cases and advising the authority and their Board partners on lessons to be learned.
  • Ensure there is a coordinated response by the PSCP partners and others to an unexpected death.
  • Engage in any other activity that facilitates, or is conducive to, the achievement of its objectives.

The PSCP will be working closely with our neighbouring Local Authority areas (Hampshire, Southampton and Isle of Wight) on key strategies, while maintaining separate action plans. We will have a joint Independent Chair, and will collaborate to review child deaths, ensuring that learning is shared more broadly. We will also share our online policies and procedures.

We will also continue to provide a local multi agency training offer. More information about the training available to school based staff is available here.

If you are worried about a child, or are concerned about an on-going issue involving a child, please contact the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) directly on 0845 671 0271.

Further Information:

Tier 2 co-ordinators
Tier 2 co-ordinators work in the Multi Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) Early Help Team to help when cases are assessed as meeting a Tier 2 threshold. The co-ordinators will assist in identifying support needs with the family and act as a critical friend to guide the professional network in undertaking a plan of support including Early Help Assessments (EHA), meetings and effective family plans. Tier 2 co-ordinators support Portsmouth Safeguarding Children Board training in Early Help procedures and advise professionals in the city about procedures, local support services and facilities that may be available for a family. More information and contact details here.

Southern Domestic Abuse Service (SDAS) Offer

SDAS Newsletter April 2018

SDAS Portsmouth referral form 2018 

Domestic Violence referral pathway 

MARAC Referral Form

PIP Referral form & DASH Risk Assessment  

Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence between children in schools and colleges

Home Office: Child exploitation disruption toolkit

Advice for governing bodies, proprietors, headteachers, principals, senior leadership teams and designated safeguarding leads

This is advice is provided by the Department for Education (the department). The focus is sexual violence and sexual harassment between children at school and college. For the purposes of this advice, a child is anyone under the age of 18. It provides advice on what sexual violence and sexual harassment is, how to minimise the risk of it occurring and what to do when incidents occur, or are alleged to have occurred.


As part of our commitment to ‘child centred policing’, Hampshire Police has worked in partnership with education experts and youth practitioners to develop Safe4me, a web-based resource and information library providing support to schools, partner agencies and parents with keeping children and young people safe and informed about current risks they may face growing up.

Designed as a one-stop shop, the free to use website provides a range of subject specific toolkits and sections consisting of useful content such as pre-prepared lesson plans and ideas, activities, advice and additional information from credible organisations; features include news pages, campaigns, service directories and opportunities to share information or get involved in initiatives.

Ongoing development means that Safe4me will consistently evolve according to risks, demand and need, ensuring it remains current and credible at all times. It is important to future development and the overall of value of Safe4me that users have the opportunity to input their knowledge and expertise to the site, inviting users to share relevant information and resources they feel would be of value to others.

Please consider using Safe4me in the work you do with children, young people and their families, signposting colleagues to the site and encourage parents to refer to the relevant support section to help them, where needed, keep their children safe and informed.

Support and assistance is available Monday to Friday from the police education team via the Safe4me contact page. www.safe4me.co.uk

Prevent in Education: A Portsmouth Perspective

New Zealand March tragedy:

 New Zealand Tragedy Primary

 New Zealand Tragedy Secondary

Discussing a terrorist attack with primary children

Discussion framework to be used in the event of a terrorist attack – July 2016


What is the Prevent Strategy?

  • Prevent represents one strand of the Government’s counter-terrorist strategy known as CONTEST.
  • Prevent aims to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism.
  • Since July 2015, school and a range of other public bodies have a legal responsibility to give due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.
  • This is known as the Prevent Duty as is part of a school’s wider safeguarding role.
  • Prevent mythbusting
  • The overall role of schools in safeguarding children is set out in the Government’s statutory guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education

What are your Prevent Strategy responsibilities?

What support is on offer?

  • Training: for staff or sections of staff so that they are confident in their ability to understand, recognise and refer vulnerabilities that can lead to radicalisation
  • Curriculum: design and mapping to create safe spaces for discussion on extremist narratives and allow challenge to sources of information; support on the implementation of British Values; support on establishing digital resilience
  • Outreach: support and advice to specific individuals on safeguarding policies, current legislation and compliance with OFSTED requirements; risk assessing, auditing and action planning
  • Signposting: to classroom resources for teachers; websites and resources and contacts within the community

Contact: [email protected]

Best Practice of the Prevent Strategy in Schools

  • Effective leadership and management
  • Robust safeguarding policies that include referral pathways
  • Well trained and confident staff
  • Relevant curriculum and embedding of British Values
  • Confident and empowered pupils who think critically and are resilient to all forms of extremism
  • Good Practice in Schools

Prevent Resource Pack

Prevent: A Portsmouth Perspective
Suggested areas for Prevent self assessment
Why is the Education Sector vital?
Good Practice for Schools
Channel: A One Minute Guide

Prevent Bulletins

For further information or to arrange an appointment email John Webster.