PIONEERING mental health support in schools which first launched in Swindon will now be offered to pupils throughout Wiltshire.

Mental Health Support Teams will work with young people in schools and colleges across the county

NHS England’s £9.3m trailblazer mental health scheme will begin in Wiltshire from January next year.

Mental health experts will go into schools to tackle issues like exam stress, friendship difficulties and low mood.

Swindon was one of the first places in England to set up the new support network, which is now to be rolled out across the rest of the county.

Wiltshire NHS commissioners called it fantastic news for children, parents and teachers

One in nine young people aged five to 15 had a diagnosable mental health condition in 2017.

Wiltshire Council, Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group and Bath and North East Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group joined forces to bid in the second phase of the £9.3m programme.

Wiltshire Council cabinet member for children, Pauline Church said: “Now more than ever young people are under pressure, stress and social anxiety can cause real problems which affect their wellbeing and mental health.

“We know there is some excellent support out there already.

“This Trailblazer programme will build on that and provide even more support, earlier and where young people tell us that they want to receive it – in schools.

“The programme will help young people to improve their emotional health and wellbeing and get back on track.

Lucy Baker, acting commissioning director for maternity, children and mental health at Wiltshire CCG said:

“It’s fantastic news that we’ve received funding for this important scheme.

“We know children, young people, their parents, supporters and carers want to be able to access mental health services quickly and easily and the Trailblazer scheme is a significant step forward in enabling that to happen.”

The package of measures is part of the Government’s plan to improve mental health support for children and young people, including identify mental health issues before they become more acute.

Teenagers with a mental health disorder are more than twice as likely to have a mental disorder in adulthood.