In It Together - A Social Emotional Mental Health Competency Framework for Staff Working in Education


These frameworks have been designed to support the national ambition to improve children and young people’s social emotional mental health by 2020 and the implementation of Mental Health Support Teams.  We want children to get the best out of their years in education and achieve their academic potential, growing into emotionally strong and resilient adults. 


Young people told us that they would like to know, and have the confidence, that staff in their setting are properly trained in emotional wellbeing and mental health. We responded to this request by developing the In It Together frameworks.


The framework comes in separate versions for those working in early years, primary schools, secondary schools and colleges.  This ensures they are age appropriate and meet the needs of children and young people. Each framework has detailed instructions on how it can be used and each competency is mapped to a training suggestion, which has been clinically reviewed.  It contains a self-audit tool so individuals can track their progress and covers every member of staff within a setting, to enable them to gain the appropriate level of skill and knowledge according to their role.


The framework is designed to be flexible, with settings able to use it as much or as little as they wish.  It was piloted for an academic year across 50+ settings in Yorkshire & the Humber.  These settings included early years, primary schools, pupil referral units, secondary schools, colleges, special schools and a Youth Offending Institute to make sure it was fully fit for purpose and we want to give a huge thank you to all the pilot sites that were involved.  The frameworks are also suitable for special schools and alternative provisions, such as Pupil Referral Units.  The following frameworks were updated in December 2019 (the comptencies did not change but hyperlinks were updated and additional resources included).




We asked Stairways what was important to them when creating the frameworks.  


Available here is our Guide for Education Settings Supporting CYP Mental Health as a Result of Covid-19