Education Minister Michelle McIlveen has announced a further £2.25million investment in the Healthy Happy Minds programme.

The counselling and therapeutic support programme for primary school pupils will now be able to continue in the next academic year, with funding guaranteed until the end of 2022 at this stage.

Announcing the investment, Minister McIlveen said: “Looking after the emotional health and wellbeing of our children is of paramount importance to me. That is why I have decided to extend the Healthy Happy Minds pilot into the next academic year.

“This programme continues to have a significant positive impact on the wellbeing of our youngest pupils and there is a clear need to continue providing them with this critical support.

“I welcome confirmation received today from the Finance Minister, this will allow me to provide all primary schools with additional allocations for September to December 2022 to secure therapeutic and counselling services for their pupils.”

Funding will be provided to all primary schools including special schools and EOTAS with a primary school cohort.

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