Information for participating schools

What is the ‘Headstart’ project about?

Headstart is a programme sponsored by the Big Lottery Fund that aims to help young people and their families to cope better with difficult circumstances, prevent common mental health problems and to support those who are already experiencing difficulties. This work is happening in 12 different areas across England. In each area, work is focused around (i) a child’s experiences at school, (ii) their ability to access the community services they need, (iii) their home life and family relationships, and (iv) their interaction with digital technology.

Our evaluation of the Headstart pilot aims to look at the different ways the 12 areas are doing this work and see how this might be helping children and young people in each area. As part of this, we have developed a ‘common measurement framework’ that uses an online survey to ask children and young people about their general wellbeing, the sources of support in their life that help them to cope better with difficult circumstances, and their mental health. We will be running these surveys twice, from March-June 2015 and March-June 2016. In the second survey children and young people will also be asked about their involvement in the Headstart project (e.g. if they have participated in Headstart activities in their school).

The participation of schools in each project area is fundamental to the success of our national evaluation.

The participation of schools in each project area is fundamental to the success of our national evaluation.