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Journal Article

Citation

Swannell S, Hand M, Martin G. School Ment. Health 2009; 1(4): 229-239.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2009, Holtzbrinck Springer Nature Publishing Group)

DOI

10.1007/s12310-009-9019-4

PMID

unavailable

Abstract

A 20-week universal mental health promotion programme (the Aussie Optimism Program), based on cognitive–behavioural intervention procedures and targeting cognitive and social risk and protective factors, was delivered to 417 year eight students (mean age 13 years) from three secondary schools in Brisbane, Australia. Students were assessed with the Centre for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, Children’s version, and the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire before and after completing the programme. Results indicated that the programme was most beneficial for students experiencing emotional and behavioural difficulties before commencement of the programme; however, the lack of a control group and other methodological limitations prevents conclusions being drawn about the efficacy of this programme. Nevertheless, the results raise the question of whether the costs of developing and maintaining a universal mental health promotion programme outweigh the benefits of helping only a small proportion of students.

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