The Kitemark process is currently on hold as it is being reviewed and redesigned. We know that many schools will have undertaken significant work already as part of this process and we want to reassure them that this will not be wasted. We will not be accepting any further Kitemark submissions, resubmissions or action plans this academic year. Further information will be provided to schools on the next steps as soon as possible.
By completing the self-review document, schools review and reflect on their current interventions, provisions, resources, practice, and tools they have in place, and will ask themselves questions like “are we doing enough?” and “what improvements can be made?”. The document is then reviewed and discussed in a multi-agency panel with representatives from Public Health, Public Health Nursing Service, School representatives, Educational Psychologists, Herts for Learning and Strategic Leads for Mental Health in schools. The process is designed to support schools to develop their own whole-school approach to improving mental health and emotional wellbeing. For a school to be awarded with the Healthy Young Minds in Herts kitemark they would need to demonstrate reflective practice with clear actions on how to develop their good practice and have a clear plan about how to address any gaps.
Schools are not expected to achieve everything outlined in their plan straight away. However, they are expected to follow the action plan they have submitted to the panel and provide an updated annual action plan which will be reviewed by the panel for the next 3 years.
The kitemark accreditation is a process and an on-going developmental journey for the school. Different schools will be at different stages of their emotional wellbeing and mental health journey. The self-review document can also be used by schools who are not looking to complete the kitemark accreditation, but to use the framework to internally support and strengthen good practice and increase consistency of good practice around emotional wellbeing and mental health.
Once schools have held the kitemark accreditation for at least one year, an additional award called the Suicide Aware Schools and College Status is available to schools. This award aims to enhance whole school awareness, increase confidence and consistency of good practice and training and resources in the event of a suicide or attempted suicide within the school or the broader community.