Selkirk High: Neurodiversity and Mental Health webinars
In March 2021, we partnered with Selkirk High School and The Harris Trust to deliver three webinars on neurodiversity in secondary schools. There was a particular focus on the experiences of autistic young people, and on mental health.
Each session featured a short talk and a chance for questions from the audience. Sessions included autistic people as speakers and panellists. The focus was on providing an up to date and progressive model for understanding autism and delivering support to enable autistic young people to thrive.
Neurodiversity - what is it and how can we apply it?
The first webinar, entitled, 'Neurodiversity: what is it and how can we apply it was' an introduction to the concept of neurodiversity and its relevance for autism and mental health. It was given by our Director, Sue Fletcher-Watson.
Sue was joined by Natalie Jenkins, a researcher at the University of Edinburgh with a focus on traumatic brain injury and dementia. She has autism and has developed resources for supporting autistic staff and students in higher education.
You can watch this webinar here.
Neurodiversity, autism and mental health
The 'Neurodiversity, autism and mental health' webinar, presented by Monique Botha and Sonny Hallet, explores mental health experiences in autistic young people considering influential factors, ways to understand, and to help.
Monique is an autistic autism researcher, and a Research Fellow at University of Stirling. Her research focuses on neurodiversity, mental health, wellbeing, and minority stress.
Sonny Hallett is a trainee counsellor, and current mental health advisor to AMASE (Autistic Mutual Aid Society Edinburgh). They have run two community-led research projects: one on autistic people's access to mental health support, and another on autistic people's experiences of counselling.
They are interested in autistic identity, diversity, accommodations, and connection, and exploring how their own autistic identity intersects with the other parts of themself. They also like to spend a lot of time out in the woods looking for fungi and bugs!
Watch this webinar here.
Peer support for autistic (and neurodivergent) young people
The final webinar in the series, 'Peer support for autistic (and neurodivergent) young people', presented by Catherine Crompton and Fergus Murray, was an overview of supporting autistic young people through peer networks.
Catherine is a researcher in the Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. Her research explores the diverse ways that neurodivergent people communicate, and she is particularly interested in how peer support might benefit neurodivergent people.
Fergus is a science teacher, writer and current chair of AMASE (the Autistic Mutual Aid Society Edinburgh). Formally identified as autistic at the age of thirty-one, they write about autistic experiences and psychological theories of autism, take a lot of photos of nature and do a bit of programming for fun.
Watch this webinar here.
This has been the best CPD I have attended for a long while - thank you so much!
Wonderful series of webinars, thank you very much to all your contributors over the past 3 weeks
Thank you to all panellists throughout these talks. You are changing the way we do things at Selkirk High School and we're very excited to work with you on our next steps. It's been of exceptional value.