Students in Harrogate 'are not immune from pressures' say town's Lib Dem spokesperson
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Munira Wilson MP visited the town this week to meet with education providers, in the company of Harrogate Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate Tom Gordon, to hear directly about the issues they are facing.
Nationally, pupils at almost three in four primary schools – 73.4% – will not be able to access NHS mental health support at school by the end of next year, Lib Dems claim.
In addition, they say, the Government’s Mental Health Support Teams (MHSTs) scheme will only be in place in around half – 53.5% – of secondary schools by the end of 2024.
The data is the result of a Freedom of Information request to each NHS Integrated Care Board (ICB) in England, asking for details about every MHST that operates in their area or that will be operational by the end of 2024.
Speaking to the Harrogate Advertiser, Mr Gordon said: “As a public health and health policy professional the state of mental health services really worries me, particularly when it comes to children’s mental health.
"Students here are not immune from the pressures being felt elsewhere by young people across the country.
"Harrogate has great schools but they are being hamstrung by the lack of publicly-available mental health provision.”
Lib Dem education spokesperson Munira Wilson is calling on the Government to live up to its promises on the mental well-being of students.
"Our children’s mental health services were in crisis before the pandemic but Conservative Ministers have failed completely to grasp the scale of the tidal wave in mental ill health that has emerged since.
“Liberal Democrats would invest in our children by putting a qualified mental health professional in every school – funded by increase tax on social media giants – so that more young people come to school happy, healthy and ready to learn.”
The introduction of Mental Health Support Teams (MHSTs) was announced by the Government in 2017 to deliver support to young people in schools and colleges.