The healthy further education steering group was launched in 2008 to meet the health needs of those studying and working in the further education sector.
At the core of the healthy further education programme is a self-review tool that gives college task groups an opportunity to reflect on how fit for purpose their organisation is to respond to the health needs and priorities of all learners and staff.
Mental health is one aspect of wellbeing that can be difficult for colleges to address. However, with the help of systems such as the a self-review tool, as well as wider guidance provided by the Department of Health and healthy further education steering group, services for staff and students with mental health problems can be improved.
It is down to individual colleges to take advantage of these tools and advice. They need to create an environment and culture that allows for emotional wellbeing to be discussed openly and addressed, so that people can receive the treatment they require.
By ensuring the right processes and systems are in place, colleges can help to increase the numbers of people who enjoy working and learning in colleges and who achieve their goals.
Michele Sutton is principal of Bradford College and chair of the Healthy Further Education (Healthy FE) Steering Group.