Milestone Academy recognises that mental health problems among people with a learning disability are often overlooked, underdiagnosed and left untreated due to poor understanding, awareness, evidence in this area and symptoms mistakenly attributed to the person’s learning disability. In fact, children with learning disabilities are four and a half times more likely to have a mental health problem, than children without a learning disability . For those with ASD, 70% children with ASD will have a mental health concern at some point in their life, and 40% will have two or more.
In addition, people who display behaviours associated with neurodevelopmental conditions such as Autism and/or ADHD are likely to find it more difficult to recognise their stress, to regulate or allow others to regulate them and then access support associated with their wellbeing.
Milestone Academy uses a range of universal strategies to support wellbeing, with targeted support such as wellbeing plans and ELSA interventions accessible for pupils for whom more support is required. Specialist support such as CAMHS can be sought through a referral by school, parents/ carers, Social Services or your GP. (for further details please refer to the school behaviour policy). However, there are a range of resources available to families to support the Milestone community at home to support our students to communicate, learn and feel less stressed and anxious when needed.
To seek further support regarding Mental Health
The NHS Kent and Medway mental wellbeing information hub for children and young people, contains a wealth of information and services to support. Click the link below:
We do also recommend that you contact your child’s teacher to inform them of any difficulties arising at home, as they or specialist staff within the school may be able to support these difficulties. At any point you feel a greater level of support is required outside of the expertise of Milestone Academy staff we would recommend that you put in place actions given while you await support from external agencies.
Further to the above link, Kent School Health offer the following services:
- General health support
Emotional wellbeing support Strategies for low level support: For some children and young people it can be difficult to manage and understand their feelings. School Health supports low level emotional health needs and can provide strategies to manage emotional health and build resilience. Young people may be offered up to six virtual sessions of support over 12 weeks to improve wellbeing.
- Children and Young People’s Counselling Service
We offer up to six counselling sessions to help a young person gain understanding and develop strategies to help them feel better. For primary school aged children, we offer the child six sessions with a counsellor, or if more appropriate, we will offer parents six weekly sessions with advice on practical, easy to use strategies to support their child. We have also extended our service to include bereavement counselling for those aged 4-19 who have been bereaved as a result of the Coronavirus. Sessions are delivered virtually or face-to-face within a clinic setting. Referrals are accepted via the online referral form.
- SEND support. Kent School Health are a team of nurses and practitioners who work with children, young people and families in Kent. You do not have to be in school to use the service. We offer one-to-one support based on your child’s needs and can support a referral to health or education specialists if your child needs further support. Special educational need and disability (SEND) – Kent family
- Support for parents
There are a range of support options online for young people and their families including: The Kent Resilience Hub is aimed at parents of children aged between 10 and 16. It has a range of helpful articles, tools and resources for parents and carers, so that you can increase understanding and find tools and approaches to help build your child’s resilience.
- Unsure whether you need to make a referral?
Schools or parents can call and speak to one of our team to receive a consultation to assess if a referral is needed – call 0800 0113474 between 8am and 6pm.
Click on the links below to view tips for helping your child with their communication, learning, and physical wellbeing, as well as a range of resources and websites to support them, and you, with mental health, along with many other useful tools.