Our campaign for a paid counsellor to be available in every secondary school, academy and FE college in England is gaining support in Parliament – thanks to our members.
Nearly 3,000 members and supporters wrote to their MP in support of our campaign for a national commitment to counselling provision for all young people in England’s secondary schools and FE colleges.
It would bring England into line with the other nations of the UK, which have a commitment to funded school counselling services.
Our submission to the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) – a blueprint for government funding over the next four years – included a clear recommendation how counselling can complement existing investment by providing a cost-effective and universal, non-stigmatising early intervention.
And of the MPs who responded to our members, some 45% confirmed they’d written to Treasury Ministers on behalf of their constituents to ask them to consider school counselling in this year's CSR.
Now an Early Day Motion has been tabled before the House of Commons by Jon Trickett, the Labour MP for Hemsworth, about our call.
His motion calls on the government to “allocate resources in the in the Comprehensive Spending Review that are aimed at tackling the growing crisis of mental health among young people through a national commitment to counselling provision for all children in England’s secondary schools”.
Jo Holmes, our Children, Young People and Families Lead, said: “The campaign is going from strength to strength and it’s vital we keep the momentum going.
“We’ve had tremendous support from our members so far, thank you all so much.
“We know what a difference counselling in schools and colleges can make to young people’s lives – the earlier the help, the easier it is to access, the better the outcomes for that individual.
“Due in no small part to our members support of our campaign, this vital issue is moving up the political agenda.”
Early Day Motions are motions submitted for debate in the House of Commons for which no day has been fixed and can attract public and media interest. Once an MP has tabled the motion, it can be signed by other MPs to indicate their support.
This motion follows on from a Parliamentary Question asked by Nicke Aiken, Conservative MP for Cities of London and Westminster, to Gavin Williamson, the Education Secretary.
Ms Aiken said: “To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will (a) provide access to counselling for all children in secondary schools and (b) extend access to counselling in further education colleges?”
Jo added: “You’ll be hearing from us soon on how you can help in the next stages of our campaign, so please keep an eye on our website.”