How much does Mitey cost?

Mitey is provided free to New Zealand primary and intermediate schools, Years 1-8.

Who runs Mitey?

Mitey is owned and run by the Sir John Kirwan Foundation, a New Zealand registered charitable trust.

Who developed Mitey?

It took two years to develop Mitey and involved a team of brilliant minds – from New Zealand educators, teachers and clinicians to highly experienced experts from the University of Auckland Faculty of Education and Social Work.

Who is Mitey for?

Mitey is for primary and intermediate aged children (Years 1-8). Children will learn how to recognise and respond to their own mental health and those of others. 

Why is Mitey only for Years 1-8?

We have designed Mitey for primary and intermediate aged school children, so they are equipped with the appropriate skills and knowledge to better identify and manage their own mental health – and those of others. Our vision is that as children enter secondary school they have what they need in their tool kit to successfully deal with pressures related to peers, family, relationships and their place in the world.

Teachers are busy enough – will teaching Mitey take away from other core learning areas at school?

The short answer is no. In the research phase of Mitey, teachers told us it was important to design an approach that was not just another add on to an already crowded curriculum. So Mitey has been developed as an integrated approach to teaching mental health education, which means it is cross curricular and can be easily woven into what is already being taught in the classroom.

What do you mean by a school-wide approach?

One of the key determinants of Mitey’s success is that it is a school-wide approach. This means it involves, and takes into consideration, everyone in the school community: learners, families, the Board, teachers and all staff. Everyone has the chance to understand and implement practical things which will contribute to embedding mental health education into all facets of your school.

How do you define mental health?

At Mitey we believe that everyone has mental health, just as they have physical health. Cultivating good mental health helps us cope with life’s ups and downs, and to feel comfortable asking for help from others when we need it. Mitey is an approach which ensures schools have the resources and support to teach their students to safeguard and nurture their own mental health and help others to do the same.

Where is Mitey available?

Mitey is only available to New Zealand schools.

Why is teaching mental health at school important?

From talking to teachers around the country, we know that unhappy, anxious children don’t learn. Teachers want to be part of the solution to change the worrying mental health statistics in New Zealand, and so do we at Mitey.

How do teachers deliver Mitey?

One thing that is important to remember with Mitey is that teachers are not alone – they have ongoing support from a Mitey coach every step of the way. In the classroom, Mitey units of work follow a stepped progression of learning from Levels 1-4 and there is plenty of scope for teachers to adapt the learning to their classroom. Mitey’s units of work are backed up by a comprehensive hub of resources which gives teachers the flexibility to tailor and adapt the learning to reflect the needs and strengths of their students.

If a school decides to partner with Mitey, what support does it receive?

A dedicated free coach will be appointed to your school and will work with you to develop an action plan which maps out areas of need. Your coach stays with you to help implement the plan – whether it is offering guidance at community or Board level, professional development for teachers, curriculum support or co-teaching in the classroom. The important point is there are multiple ways of working with a coach. It is just what works best for your school.

Who are your coaches and what are their qualifications?

All our coaches are senior level, Year 1-8 teachers who are adept at leading school-wide change. They know what it takes to embed Mitey school wide.

Did you pilot Mitey in NZ schools?

Yes, in 2020 and 2021 we identified schools from a range of deciles, where we trialled Mitey. This was followed by a robust evaluation process with those schools and teachers all over NZ, which allowed us to refine our approach. 

How many times can a school expect a visit from a Mitey coach?

Mitey coaches are flexible so you can make Mitey work for your school. The number of hours a coach gives your school a year can be used in any way you like to ensure you get the support in the areas where your needs are. Your login gives you ongoing unlimited access to all of Mitey’s resources.

Will you come and speak to our school community about Mitey?

Engagement of your community is crucial to ensuring school-wide change. Each school community is different and so one size will not fit all. Mitey coaches will assist you with ways to engage your community; there are also ideas for community engagement on our website.

Does the Ministry of Education know about Mitey?

Yes. We have kept the Ministry updated every step of the way. Mitey is aligned with the Mental Health Education Y1-13: a guide for teachers, leaders, and school boards due to be released by the Ministry in May 2021.