An update on how Coronavirus (COVID-19) is affecting CAMHS and guidance on where you can find additional support is available under 'Changes to community services' on the 'Advice for patients' section of our COVID-19 pages. 

We support children, young people and their families / carers, in Derby City and South Derbyshire.

Our services have been rated 'outstanding' by the people who inspect us, who are called the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

These pages will tell you about what we do and give you some advice and help. Choose from one of our popular pages or click on one of the tiles or links below.

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Brief guide for parents on reintegrating children to school during COVID-19

Parents and children may be worried about the return to their usual school routine for children, especially as we don't know when it will happen. This is understandable. It is important to remember, however, that time in school is vital for children’s education and their wellbeing.

Preparation for school

Children may find it of benefit to get themselves back into a routine before school starts. This includes getting up early in the mornings, getting ready to go to school and sleeping on time. 

Schools may send advanced plans for reintegration, with proposed timetables and expectations of what children will be doing, as well as clarity on what emotional support will be in place or available for those who are struggling. 

A flexible or phased reintegration into school may be required. It is important to have these conversations and agree on plans as soon as possible.

Look at this link for an EasyRead social story to help children understand about going back to school. 

Spotting the signs if your child is struggling

If children are struggling when they go back to their usual school routine, this may present itself in the following ways: 

  • Changes in the child’s behaviour and how they play and interact with others

  • Changes in their sleeping, eating and levels of confidence and independence 

  • Emotional difficulties, for example, becoming more anxious, clingy, withdrawn, irritable and aggressive.

Supporting your child

Emotional needs can be met through support from family and school, but if difficulties continue or escalate, it is important to get further advice. Health professionals are able to assist young people to help deal with the anxiety and uncertainty they may feel, by validating their worries and developing coping strategies. 

A key factor is effective communication between parents/carers and professionals. 

For children with special educational needs, the use of communication aids and visual guides may also be helpful. If there is a new or concerning behaviour it is important to understand the function behind this behaviour. This may include a sensory seeking/avoidance behaviour which may have a self-soothing effect. The child may display avoidant behaviour when exposed to adverse or unwanted situations. It can be helpful to consider what was happening before the behaviour occurred and what the outcome of the behaviour was. It is also important to understand triggers for anxiety or distress as well as de-escalation strategies.

Ensure that children have access to self-soothe aids. It may be helpful to include self-soothe activities during the day, whether children are at school or at home.

If as a parent or carer you are struggling with your own emotional wellbeing and mental health, or if you are struggling to support your child, it may be helpful for you to seek support too.