Home / Why Indian Educational Institutes Need More Than Just Guidelines on Mental Health Issues

Why Indian Educational Institutes Need More Than Just Guidelines on Mental Health Issues
Data presented in the Parliament by the Ministry of Education revealed that the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are alone responsible for half of the suicides in the nation since 2018 among students initiated by academic stress and poor mental health concerns.

by Pragti Sharma / 24 Mar 2023 13:23 PM IST / 0 Comment(s) / 263

Two out of ten youngsters in India between the age group of 15 to 24 years old go through some form of mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.



Data presented in the Parliament by the Ministry of Education revealed that the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are alone responsible for half of the suicides in the nation since 2018 among students initiated by academic stress and poor mental health concerns.



According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), while the effect on children’s lives is invaluable, persistent carelessness of mental health can drive India to an economic failure as elevated as $1.03 trillion between 2012-2030.



In order to address mental health issues among students, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan recently held a meeting on Sunday. The Minister has led officials from leading educational regulatory bodies such as the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), University Grants Commission (UGC), among others, in order to establish a grievance redressal system with shared accountability. The Ministry will soon form a comprehensive framework of operational approaches to institutionalise mental health programmes in educational institutions.



Pradhan said the Ministry of Education is committed to ensuring the physical, psychological, and emotional well-being of the students.



However, slight information is available on the execution of the mental health guidelines already in place for schools in India- mirroring the difference between policy and its implementation. Previous year in September, The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) published a manual for schools for early identification of mental health issues in students. The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) also has a manual on mental health problems and well-being for students in lower to higher secondary classes. Besides, the Ministry of Education operates an initiative titled Manodarpan in order to deliver mental health-related support to students, teachers, and families during the covid-19 pandemic and beyond.



Experts recommend that in order to fight mental health issues effectively among students, India must shift from a piecemeal process with unsystematic partial efforts to a long-term comprehensive strategy wherein mental health is incorporated into educational services.



A study by Professor Devvarta Kumar, Department of Clinical Psychology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, said the school mental health programme (SMHP) is globally acknowledged to enhance the mental well-being of students. Systematic implementation of this across India can create a difference.


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