WITH reports claiming that up to a quarter of 14-year-old girls have signs of depression, mental health among teenagers has never been higher on the agenda.

And Saint Martin’s School in Solihull is leading the way in prevention and support.

The school has a long and proud history of keeping mental health in the spotlight, identifying girls most at risk and offering support, guidance and advice to those who may need or benefit from it.

But now it has gone one step further by creating Mental Health Ambassador roles for a number of its Senior School pupils.

The roles have been handed to a group of pupils who took part in the recent Young People’s Mental Health Conference, organised by Solihull Children’s Service as part of World Mental Health Day.

As Mental Health Ambassadors the girls will raise the profile of mental health around school, will promote the message that ‘It is OK not to be OK’ and to help organise mental health awareness days and activities.

Saint Martin’s Head Nicola Smillie, who devoted her monthly blog in October to the topic, believes the new roles will play a huge part, alongside existing school policies and efforts, in ensuring the positive mental health of all pupils.

She said: “We are delighted to announce this new initiative which complements all the work we already do at Saint Martin’s to ensure our pupils build up resilience, mental toughness and a healthy work-life balance.

“These important topics are covered through our PSHCEE programme and the work done by our form tutors and pastoral leads.

“The addition of the Mental Health Ambassadors will, however, ensure we are doing all we can and offering the very best support for anyone who may be experiencing mental health issues.”

In addition to its ongoing work within the classroom, Saint Martin’s has also published information sheets on its website to help parents and teachers understand young people’s mental health and tips for talking to young people about mental health.

For more information on the school visit: www.saintmartins-school.com