MHST in SEN schools

(Mental Health Support Team in Special Educational Needs Schools in Herts and West Essex)

Introducing the Mental Health Support Team (MHST) in SEN Schools:
Hertfordshire and West Essex

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The MHST is an early intervention service, working with mild to moderate mental health difficulties and challenging behaviours. This is part of a national programme to offer early interventions in school settings.

The MHST supports mental wellbeing in the following SEN schools in Herts and West Essex:  The Collett, Colnbrook, Garston Manor, Middleton, Southfield, The Valley, Woolgrove, Oakview, and Wells Park. We are only able to offer support to parents/ carers of children who attend schools that have signed up to support from the MHST for SEN schools.

This support will be delivered by an Educational Mental Health Practitioner (EMHP). The MHST is currently offering virtual support due to covid-19, therefore you will need access to a computer or smartphone.

What support does the MHST offer?

The MHST helps to support mental health in schools in several ways:

  • Workshops with young people or parent/carers (approx. 1hr)
  • Group based work with young people or parent/carers (minimum of 4 sessions)
  • Guided 1:1 self-help sessions (6 – 8 weeks) with young people, parent/carers around proactive prevention and support for mild to moderate mental health difficulties and challenging behaviour
  • A ‘whole school approach’ to understanding and improving mental health, which may include supporting the school’s mental health lead, supporting with the wellbeing curriculum, identifying mental health resources, creating posters and displays etc
Workshops with young people or parent/carers 

·       One off presentations discussing a specific topic within mental wellbeing

·       These workshops may be for parents to attend, or for your child to attend

·       Approx. 1hr in length (varying length when working with your child)



Group based work with young people or parent/carers

·       Minimum of 4 sessions (occurring weekly)

·       These groups may be for parents to attend, or for your child to attend

·       The group will offer support for a specific mental health difficulty (e.g anxiety or challenging behaviour)

·       Approx. 1hr in length (varying length when working with your child)



Guided 1:1 self-help sessions

·       Early intervention

·       6 – 8 sessions of 1:1 support (weekly sessions)

·       Each session is approx. 1hr in length

·       Sessions are with child or parent/carer depending on the child’s age, ability and nature of the difficulty

·       Working on specific goals


The MHST will be offering multiple parent groups and workshops throughout the academic school year. Spaces on our groups/workshops will be limited to 6 – 8 attendees and will work on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. These sessions will be virtual due to covid-19.

Meeting the needs of young people and their family

The MHST would appreciate any feedback from parents/carers to ensure the support we offer meets the needs of young people and their families. This can be shared with the MHST by completing the ‘expression of interest form’ and returning this to:

Please note that this is not a referral form and does not guarantee support from the MHST. By completing this form you are helping the MHST understand what support families would find most beneficial.

If you are interested in support from the MHST

School staff are able to refer your child to the MHST for 1:1 support.  The following members of staff at your child’s school can make a referral

  • Richard Pritchard – Deputy Headteacher/DSL
  • Anne Linnell – Family Support Worker (FSW)
  • Louise Baldwin – INCo
  • Teaching staff

The referral will be considered by the team. If the MHST is not the most suitable team to support your needs, we will work with you and the school to signpost to the most appropriate resources.

Please note that the MHST can only work with a limited number of children at a given time therefore your child’s referral may be added to a waitlist.

Information regarding parent groups and workshops will be shared with you via your child’s school.

If you do not wish for your child to be involved in any provision being offered by the MHST, please email your school and ask them to let the EMHP know.

Please also let the school know if you do not wish for the school to discuss your child with the MHST for any other reason. You can make this decision at any time, but you must let school and the MHST know.

This information leaflet is currently in draft form. We would love to have any feedback on it. Please email with any feedback.