Plain English Summary
Background and study aims
It is estimated that mental health problems impact one in ten children and young people. Research suggests that poor mental health is strongly related to other health and development concerns such as lower academic achievement, poor peer and school relationships, and lower well-being. Good mental health and social and emotional wellbeing gives young people the opportunity to develop resilience skills to cope with behavioural and mental health problems. Therefore, research is needed to develop cost-effective and feasible interventions for the promotion of wellbeing in young people. The current study aims to assess the effectiveness of the Team Social Action (TSA) intervention programme. TSA aims to support young people to foster interests, highlight achievements, develop life skills, understand their place in the world, and take on responsibilities, as well as increase connectedness to peers, school and/or the community. The current study will recruit about 300 secondary school pupils from Newham to examine whether TSA improves young people's wellbeing, peer relationships, and school connectedness.
Who can participate?
Pupils currently in Year 8 or Year 9 at a secondary school working in partnership with HeadStart Newham that is implementing TSA. Young people identified as having an emerging mental health difficulty by a professional or themselves.
What does the study involve?
Pupils are randomly allocated into one of two groups. Those in the first group participate in TSA during the first school term. During this time, those in the second group do not participate in any interventions. After the first group complete their participation, both groups complete online questionnaires that measure wellbeing, peer relationships, and school connectedness. After this, the second group go on to participate in TSA. The study lasts for one academic year.
What are the possible benefits and risks of participating?
Some pupils might find taking part in this study an interesting experience. Information obtained from this study may help us to understand more about what helps to increase young people’s wellbeing, inform future research, and help to improve services for young people. There are no known disadvantages to taking part.
Where is the study run from?
London Borough of Newham, Children and Young People’s Services (UK)
When is study starting and how long is it expected to run for?
May 2017 to September 2018
Who is funding the study?
Big Lottery Fund (UK)
Who is the main contact?
1. Prof. Neil Humphrey (scientific)
2. Ms Valdeep Gill (public)
Prof Neil Humphrey
University of Manchester
Manchester Institute of Education
Ellen Wilkinson Building
+44 (0)161 275 3404
Mrs Valdeep Gill
London Borough of Newham
Children and Young People’s Services
East Ham Town Hall
328 Barking Road
+44 (0)20 3373 4559
Improvement of well-being, peer relationships, and school connectedness through Team Social Action in secondary school students: a waitlist randomized controlled trial
The principal questions of the current study are:
RQ1. What is the impact of Team Social Action intervention on young people’s self-reported mental well-being (SWEMWBS)?
RQ2. What is the impact of Team Social Action intervention on young people’s self-reported school connection (SRS-School Connection)?
RQ3. What is the impact of Team Social Action intervention on young people’s self-reported peer support (SRS-Peer Support)?
UCL Research Ethics Committee, 27/09/2017, ref: 3562/003
Wait-list randomized controlled trial
Primary study design
Secondary study design
Randomised controlled trial
Quality of life
Patient information sheet
Not available in web format, please use the contact details to request a patient information sheet
Wellbeing, peer relationships, and school connectedness
A sample of approximately 300 pupils from 14 secondary schools in Newham will randomly be allocated into one of two groups, which will be balanced on year group (Year 8/Year 9) and gender (male/female):
1. Participate in Team Social Action (TSA) during the 2017 Autumn term
2. Be part of a waitlist comparison group who will participate in TSA in 2018 Spring term
Dose: Weekly facilitated group activities
Duration: One school term (10-12 weeks)
How it is administered: Young people work as a group to identify a volunteering/social action project with school and or/community components and are supported to co-develop and complete said project. Up to 3 one-to-one sessions take place, with youth practitioners supporting students to reflect on their learning. The intervention is facilitated by trained youth practitioners.
Primary outcome measures
Wellbeing, measured using the Short Warwick Edinburgh Measure of Wellbeing (SWEMWBS) after the intervention group complete TSA but before the waitlist control group begin their participation (February-March 2018)
Secondary outcome measures
Peer relationships and school connectedness, measured using the Student Resilience Survey (SRS) after the intervention group complete TSA but before the waitlist control group begin their participation (February-March 2018)
Overall trial start date
Overall trial end date
Participant inclusion criteria
1. Young people attending secondary schools in Newham that implement the TSA intervention
2. Young people in Years 8 and 9
3. Young people with an emerging mental health difficulty as identified by a professional (such as a teacher) or them self. 1:1 screening between young person and youth practitioner to determine level of difficultly and willingness to take part in TSA
Target number of participants
Participant exclusion criteria
1. Young people from schools that do not implement the TSA intervention
2. Young people from Years 7, 10, 11, 12
3. Young people that have returned a parental opt-out
4. Young people currently under care of CAMHS
Recruitment start date
Recruitment end date
Countries of recruitment
Trial participating centre
London Borough of Newham Children and Young People’s Services
East Ham Town Hall 328 Barking Road
University of Manchester, Manchester Institute of Education
Ellen Wilkinson Building
+44 (0)161 275 3404
Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families
47 Brunswick Place
+44 (0)20 7443 2218
Big Lottery Fund
Funding Body Type
private sector organisation
Funding Body Subtype
Results and Publications
Publication and dissemination plan
Planned publication in a high-impact peer reviewed journal sometime in early 2019 (February-March).
IPD sharing statement
The data will not be made available because it is subject to a data sharing agreement with the host local authority (Newham) and funder (Big Lottery Fund) that does not include it being made available publicly. The data will be held at the University of Manchester.
Intention to publish date
Participant level data
Not expected to be available
Results - basic reporting