Minister visits specialist Education Centre
Welsh Government Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams AM, visited Nant-y-Bryniau Education Centre recently to tour the facilities and to meet the pupils, education staff and health staff.
Nant-y-Bryniau, situated on the Abergele hospital site, is part of the North Wales Adolescent Service (NWAS); a Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS).
The education staff at Nant-y-Bryniau provide full-time education for young people who are admitted to the in-patient unit for assessment and treatment in NWAS, or who receive intensive support in the community from the Kite team.
The small team of teachers, teaching assistants and administrative staff work closely with mainstream schools and colleges to make sure the young people attending Nant-y-Bryniau remain engaged with their learning.
The Minister spent time talking with a group of young people who took time out of their lessons to share their experiences and explain some of the pressures they face.
Her visit focussed on the growing recognition that the wellbeing of pupils and staff in schools has to be a priority. The Minister heard how target grades in particular “place a lot of unneeded stress on young people to achieve, especially if they themselves perceived the grades to be beyond their reach.”
The young people also acknowledged that it is sometimes difficult for mainstream school teachers to know what to do when they suspect that a pupil in their class may be presenting with mental health difficulties, and all agreed that teachers benefit from mental health awareness training.
Conwy Council Leader, Cllr Gareth Jones, accompanied the Minister during her visit, he said: “I was eager to visit the young people at Nant-y-Bryniau with the Minister, and to show that here we have the right environment to learn and achieve.”
Posted on 22/03/2019