Nurturing Surrey

Nurturing Surrey

Thousands of pupils in Surrey are to be given support with their wellbeing thanks to a vital new programme. 

The Surrey Nurturing Schools Programme will be rolled out in 100 settings by the Schools Alliance for Excellence (SAfE) in partnership with ourselves, nurtureuk.

Teaching staff will be trained to use nurture - a practice that helps children develop their social and emotional skills and has been shown to improve behaviour, attendance and attainment, and reduce exclusions


There has been an almost 50% increase in the number of primary-aged pupils in Surrey suffering social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) challenges.

In 22/23 the number of pupils with SEMH challenges who were suspended increased by 68% on the same period in 21/22, and the number of those excluded has increased by 133 per cent. 

Schools are also reporting a substantial increase in the number of pupils presenting with distressing behaviour. 

The new programme will start in April and is being funded by the Mental Health Investment Fund. 

Arti Sharma, nurtureuk CEO, said: “As mental health difficulties among children and young people reach record levels, and school absences rocket, a nurturing approach in education is more essential than ever. Children and teachers must be equipped with the tools they need to succeed and this programme will ensure pupils are ready and able to learn. We’re delighted to bring nurture to Surrey and we’re looking forward to making a real difference to children’s lives by helping them flourish in school.”

Maria Dawes, SAfE CEO, said: “Children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing has never been so important. We recognise that nurturing approaches, with their rigorous evidence base, are a great investment to support inclusion and improvements to both wellbeing and learning in Surrey schools. We are really excited to be working with nurtureuk to help every child able to thrive and learn.”