According to the Mental Health Foundation, 10% of young people self-harm. That’s two or three in every classroom, and the figures may be even higher as many of those who do self-harm do not tell others.
If they’ve never had first-hand experience of a pupil self-harming some teachers may find it hard to believe that the numbers are so high, but official figures show that the UK has the highest number in Europe. Every year our Accident and Emergency departments report 200,000 cases of self-harming.
How to spot the signs If you know your learners well you may realise that something is not right fairly early on. The signs might be quite nebulous at first: irritability and mood changes, avoiding people and poor marks for school work.
However, these are common in adolescents, and could mean many things. So look out for injuries such as cuts, bruises or cigarette burns, and keep an eye on children who keep covered up even in hot weather.
Find out how to talk to students by reading the full article on Teachwire here.