Parentkind’s mental health research raised in parliament

16 November 2021
Every year, Parentkind releases research findings from its Parent Voice Report. The Annual Parent Survey provides a snapshot of parents’ views and attitudes on their child’s schooling and education.

Although the 2021 report will be published shortly, an executive summary was shared with the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Parental Participation in Education. MPs and other interested parties found the research headlines valuable. They suggested that findings on parents’ growing concerns over their child’s mental health would make a valuable contribution to a debate in the House of Commons on school-based counselling services.

It took place on Tuesday 9th November, and we were delighted to see two MPs raise the important research that we had shared with parliamentarians, demonstrating how Parentkind is presenting parent voice to policymakers and raising parents’ concerns at the highest level. 

Find out what they said below.

John McDonnell

The former Shadow Chancellor and Labour MP for Hayes and Harlington, said, I chaired the all-party parliamentary group for parental participation in education last week, and we heard that the charity Parentkind had produced a survey revealing parents’ concerns. It found that 41% of parents now see the need for additional resources to be spent on mental health services for children, and that this was their second highest priority after the need for additional learning resources.”

View a clip of John’s contribution below.

Rachel Hopkins

The Labour MP for Luton South, said, Parentkind’s Annual Parent Survey 2021 found that 41% of parents wanted any additional school funding to be spent on child mental health services, which meant that it was their second-biggest priority, while 88% wanted mental health development to be an important focus within the curriculum. However, the Government are only aiming to get mental health support teams to a quarter of young people by 2023. Will the Minister explain why there is such a lack of urgency on the Government’s part?”

You can see a transcript of the whole school-based counselling services debate on Hansard. See part one and part two.

Munira Wilson

The Liberal Democrat MP for Twickenham also mentioned Parentkind’s Parent Voice Report mental health findings. Her contribution was part of a debate on Budget Resolutions that took place in the House of Commons on 2nd November 2021.

She said, The latest survey from Parentkind, the charity that champions parental involvement in education, shows that one of the top priorities for parents for additional education spending is children’s mental health and wellbeing. I know from talking to headteachers and school governors at schools across my constituency that that is their top priority, too. Child and adolescent mental health services are overwhelmed with children experiencing a mental health crisis, often ending up in A&E and then unsuitable general paediatric wards, or with school staff having to manage conditions that they are simply not trained for.”

View a clip of Munira’s contribution below.

See a transcript of the Budget Resolutions debate in Hansard.

Sharing what you tell us with policymakers

Through regular meetings and correspondence with decision-makers, Parentkind continues to represent parent voice at all levels of influence, including with parliamentarians. This is part of our commitment to championing parent voice in education. We are grateful to every parent who supports our research by completing and sharing our surveys – you are making your voice heard where it really matters. 

See our Research Index to find out more about our substantial body of parent voice evidence on a variety of education topics.