Results from the annual NAB Independent Schools Survey show that schools are making large investments into both the general wellbeing of their students, and specialised mental health support.
Only 62 per cent of girls assessed had a strong sense of wellbeing, and 55 per cent were assessed as anxious.
Speaking to the ABC, the head of Behavioural and Industry Economics at NAB, Dean Pearson, says that a series of programs had been implemented in schools to try and combat rising anxiety amongst students.
“Wellbeing looks particularly strong for the under 50s, but the 18-24 year-old demographic is not looking very good, particularly with young women, and particularly in terms of anxiety… I am not surprised that schools are reacting to it,” he said.
Melbourne Girl’s Grammar School has reworked its timetabling to incorporate extra time, where girls can undertake more study, attend tutoring sessions, meet with a wellbeing coach or exercise.
A new community hub at the school will also open.
Principal Catherine Misson told the ABC that the programs will benefit students as they move through life.
“It’s about equipping girls with the strategies that will take them through not only school, but into life, so that they will form habits for life that are about maintaining a confident sense of identity, positive connections to others and a real optimism about their future.”
Almost all public schools have implemented wellness programs as well.
In NSW, all public schools are required to have a planned wellbeing approach, with funding provided by the government to employ counsellors and youth workers for schools.