Setting up a ‘drop-in’
The decision to set up a school-based health and well-being ‘drop-in’ is for each individual school to make in consultation with its students, parents and governors. Support may be available from Wiltshire Council and NHS Wiltshire, click here to see the full list.
The services provided by the ‘drop-in’ should be offered to enhance existing services to young people within school. It is the intention that existing services should remain, or be redirected to operate from the ‘drop-in’ (eg in the case of the school nurse or counsellor).
Here are some suggested steps to take to set up your drop-in:
1. Make contact with your local Multi-Agency Forum (MAF) where you have one.
2. Ensure ‘in principle’ agreement from the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and school governing body.
3. Undertake consultation and a needs analysis with students, parents and carers for guidance on the what, who and when of your ‘drop-in’.
4. Make contact with the ‘Young People Friendly’ (YPF) implementation lead from the NHS to see how this can support the development of a young people friendly service and provide a quality framework. YPF is the South West equivalent to ‘You’re Welcome’ which is an initiative promoted by the Department of Health.
5. Convene a multi-agency team to steer the setting up of the ‘drop-in’ and establish a shared rationale. This team should continue to drive, monitor and review the ‘drop-in’ and ensure the services are meeting the needs of the young people.
It is recommended that members of the steering group will include where available:
- a member of the SLT who will drive the ‘drop-in’ and offer a point of information within the school
- school nurse
- the staff member responsible for Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHEE)
- youth worker
- school counsellor
- Extended Services Network Co-ordinator
- any other local agency who can provide a service, including voluntary sector organisations.
6. Establish an appropriate space to use. This may be difficult to secure.
7. Work towards the ideal space but accept that this may not be achievable. Compromises may be inevitable and may determine the model that schools choose to adopt.
8. Ensure the school has a confidentiality policy in place.
9. Determine a service level agreement with each external professional support service that will be involved which ensures adherence to safeguarding practices.
10. Widely promote the service (Click here for ideas). The school website and student planners should have details of the support available.
11. Plan to offer regular communication to parents, students and staff such as through newsletters, websites etc. This will ensure everybody is aware of the services on offer and should provide a point of contact for any queries.