Thursday, June 20, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

One in four senior high school girls feels bad

Published 26 May 2024
- By Editorial Staff
School stress and high performance requirements often lead to depression and anxiety.

Students in junior and senior high school are feeling worse and worse, according to a new report, with senior high school girls feeling the worst.

We can clearly see that there is a link between the mental health problems that students experience as a result of stress and how they feel they can perform at school, explains Alexandra Björnsson, project manager at the Tim Bergling Foundation.

The survey was conducted by Novus on behalf of the Tim Bergling Foundation, the Swedish Students’ Union and the Swedish Student Council. It involved 545 students from junior and senior high school, born between 2005 and 2010, who participated in two surveys, one at the end of last year and one in January this year.

The report shows that 15 percent of respondents say they are currently feeling unwell. At the same time, more and more students are suffering from school stress and high performance demands, sometimes leading to anxiety and depression. More than half, 53 percent, of students say that performance demands at school have a fairly or very negative impact on their mental well-being.

Girls feel worse than boys, with 24 percent of senior high school girls saying they feel bad. 59 percent also say they are worried that their final grades will close doors to further studies or working life. Stress-related problems such as headaches, difficulty sleeping, sadness and panic are also common among girls, with 65 percent of senior high school girls feeling that their stress affects their grades.

Long-term stress is harmful

In this study, we clearly see a link between the mental health problems students experience as a result of stress, and how they feel they can perform at school. We know that living with stress for a long time is harmful, for both adults and children, said Alexandra Björnsson, Project Manager at the Tim Bergling Foundation, in a press release.

Two out of three students say that some teachers help to reduce stress, while one in four say that teachers do not help at all, especially girls in junior high school who feel that they lack support from teachers.

Together we can work towards a school for learning and achievement instead of anxiety and depression, but the change must start now. Teachers and student health services have an important task here, but the students’ own involvement and influence are also crucial to bring about the necessary change, says Embla Persson, President of the Swedish Students’ Union.

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