Children at Manor School in Northamptonshire have been inspired by sports star Harry Kane who made a special appearance to mark Children’s Mental Health Week.
The famous footballer and England Captain also answered questions from students at the school as part of an initiative by the Harry Kane Foundation and Bounce Forward charities. The charities are working together on a shared mission to inspire a generation’s thinking about mental health and how to nurture and build psychological fitness.
Bounce Forward marked Children’s Mental Health Week with the special visit to Manor School, alongside Harry and Kate Kane. The aim of the visit was to hear from pupils and see a Bounce Forward Physical Resilience lesson in action, which has been curated with Harry Kane, and teaches children about the link between physical and mental health.
Harry joined the classroom virtually from Munich and spoke directly to the children to hear how they have been using the learning from the lessons and answer their questions.
Manor School, part of the Nene Education Trust family of schools, has been specially selected as one of 18 lead secondary schools across all nine regions of the country, to benefit from the free psychological fitness training and educational resources provided in partnership by Bounce Forward and the Harry Kane Foundation. Designed to nurture and build mental resilience and emotional wellbeing, Manor School has embedded Bounce Forward’s Healthy Minds lessons into its core curriculum to achieve long-term impact.
Matt Coleman, Deputy CEO at Nene Education Trust, said:
“This initiative is so incredibly important and is an area that both I personally and we as a family of schools have been championing for a long time now. Young peoples’ mental health is not getting any better; it is a gradually worsening situation.
“We are determined to do something to make a positive change, which is our priority focus across our Trust; however this should be a key focus for all schools, everywhere. Some would say that there is a general reluctance within the education sector to instigate meaningful change as many schools are exam factories focused on grades and percentages of pupils passing exams, meaning that schools are unable to also work on the children’s resilience, their mental wellbeing and the ability to look after themselves, which is sad.
“Our work with Bounce Forward aims to support our young people with better strategies for supporting their own mental health. It goes without saying that having someone as iconic as Harry Kane inspiring this change adds to the profile and will undoubtedly help to ensure long-lasting impact.”
Healthy Minds includes training for education staff and 69-lessons across year 7 – year 11. The evidence-based teaching resources feature bespoke content co-authored by Harry and his wife, Kate. The Physical Resilience lessons inspired by Harry deliver learning on the role that exercise, nutrition and sleep has on mental health.
Alongside Bounce Forward, Kate Kane also visited Manor School, to see first-hand the lessons she has helped design with Bounce Forward called Intentional Stillness. Kate heard from teachers and spoke to students about what the lessons, which teach calming and focusing techniques to nurture and build positive mental health, mean to them.
Nene Education Trust Mental Health and Wellbeing Lead, Amy Bradshaw, said:
“Meeting Harry was a real focal point of the day for students and having Kate there in person to watch an Intentional Stillness lesson and engage with the students was a really special part of the whole experience.
“The buzz this created at Manor School was extremely positive as Harry is someone that so many of the children look up to. He opened up and talked about the fact that he had faced struggles and difficulties and he talked about the things he does to overcome that. It is great Harry and his foundation is doing this work because lending his voice to something so important means more people will sit up and listen.
“Children’s mental health is lower than ever before and a schools role in how it tackles that issue is bigger than ever before. As a Trust we are doing everything we can to skill children up with the knowledge, understanding and the tools around mental health and wellbeing to empower them. We want to ensure our children are happy mentally and physically and encourage them to achieve the best they can achieve – happy children learn best.”
Lucy Bailey, CEO and Founder of Bounce Forward added:
“I wish I could bottle up the thoughtful and strategic approach that Manor School has taken in implementing Healthy Minds and share it with every school in the country! They are at the start of their journey, but have put into place all the building blocks, using all the expertise and energy from within the school to imbed the learning. I am excited to see how it grows over the months and years ahead, and to be able to share their approach with other schools.”
For more information about Nene Education Trust visit https://www.neneeducationtrust.org.uk/