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BMC Public Health ; 24(1): 268, 2024 01 23.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-38263048


BACKGROUND: Schoolteachers are often the first to respond when a student presents with a mental health issue in the classroom. This places a burden on schools that impacts school staff, healthcare workers and teachers. More broadly, it places a responsibility on the education system to address students' mental health. This study examines Australian teachers' classroom experiences and the training areas identified by teachers as necessary to manage these issues. METHOD: Interviews were undertaken with 18 in-service teachers between 2020 and 2021 from Catholic, Independent and Public schools. Data were gathered via multiple interviews and analysed using thematic content analysis. RESULTS: The major mental health issues identified by teachers related to mental disorders, depression, anxiety, and a complex range of negative emotional states. Teachers requested training in child and adolescent mental health, counselling skills, early detection and intervention, and training skills to manage the complex relationship with parents and external health and community personnel. Teachers also reported the need to access mental health resources, support and training, which were differentially accessed along socioeconomic status and postcodes. CONCLUSION: The data show that teachers are often placed as first responders when a student has a mental health issue but feel inadequately trained to manage these issues in the classroom. We identified mental health issues presenting in Australian classrooms and documented critical features of mental-health training asked for by teachers in order to address those issues. Given the increasing demands on teachers to address the mental health of children and adolescents, we argue that an urgent review of mental health training for teachers is needed.

Socorristas , Transtornos Mentais , Adolescente , Criança , Humanos , Saúde Mental , Austrália , Ansiedade