George Ryan & Julia Belgutay

‘Many students can’t access the support they desperately need’

Funding woes and Ofsted inspections pale in comparison with the pressures facing college leaders to support students, as a new Association of Colleges-Tes survey reveals a spike in disclosed mental health conditions. George Ryan and Julia Belgutay report

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The scale of mental health issues affecting the UK population is stark. Data from the Mental Health Foundation, published last month, shows that two-thirds of young adults who took part in its survey admitted to feeling so stressed at least once during the previous year that they had felt overwhelmed or unable to cope. And the impact of this trend is being felt within colleges.

When Richard Caulfield joined the Association of Colleges as regional director for the North West, he asked principals he met about which issue was keeping them awake at night. “On consecutive visits they said not ...

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