A new mental health teaching resource, Mental health education and hauora: Teaching interpersonal skills, resilience, and wellbeing, funded by the Beeby Fellowship, has now been launched.

Lead authors Dr Katie Fitzpatrick and Kat Wells were co-recipients of the 2016 Beeby Fellowship (now called the Beeby Award), a joint initiative by the New Zealand Council for Educational Research (NZCER) and the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.

“Health education in schools has often focused on community health issues, such as alcohol and drug use, but The New Zealand Curriculum actually encourages engaging young people in the study of health,” said Fitzpatrick.

“This resource supports teachers to plan and deliver lessons that will help students develop knowledge about their identity and wellbeing, their relationships and communication, about social issues and social justice, and about health promotion and action.”

Fitzpatrick, an associate professor in health and physical education in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Auckland, and Wells, the head of Faculty of Health and Physical Education at Lynfield College, worked with other experts to produce a comprehensive and practical resource for teachers who deliver health education within The New Zealand Curriculum.

Mental health education and hauora: Teaching interpersonal skills, resilience, and wellbeing is available from NZCER Press for $85. Visit www.nzcer.org.nz/books.


  1. Let us get our concepts sorted, our understanding of English clarified. As I understand it “Mental Health” can only mean “Absence of mental illness”. Please correct me if I am wrong – but please state, logically and rationally, why I am wrong.

    Mental health does NOT mean “knowledge about identity and well-being, relationship and communication, social issues and social justice, health promotion and action”. Such stuff is most certainly very important – hopefully each of us little individual human beings will grow, develop and mature here throughout our lives.


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