Mental health in the classroom

Young people who learn more about mental health become less prejudiced than their schoolmates. They also become more open about their own feelings and problems, and are more likely to seek professional help for psychological difficulties than those who did not take part in the programme. These are among the results of an evaluation of the effects of three training programmes in mental health for high-school pupils and teachers, which was carried out on behalf of the Directorate of Health by SINTEF Technology and Society.

Today, about 200,000 children and adolescents, or around 15 – 20 percent of this age group, suffer from psychological problems. According to the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, the most frequent problems are anxiety and depression. Some of the main aims of the project were to teach young people to take care of their own mental health, to show them how they can help each other and tell them where they can find help.