Critics say 2019 launch of vital mental health plan is not soon enough

Children suffering from anxiety and depression will be offered counselling at school under government plans to tackle a widely reported crisis in young people’s mental health. Pupils in England will be able to attend sessions with therapists at school or college in an attempt to stop any psychological difficulties deepening into lifelong issues.

Every school will also be required to appoint a teacher to co-ordinate improved support for the fast-growing number of children who are struggling mentally, many self-harming as a result of bullying, exam stress, dissatisfaction with their body shape, troubles at home and other factors.

Related: Guardian Public Service Awards 2017 health and wellbeing winner: Highgate primary school

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Mental health is a level of psychological well-being, or an absence of a mental disorder; it is the "psychological state of someone who is functioning at a satisfactory level of emotional and behavioral adjustment".