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Education professionals' experiences and understandings of self harm in primary school children: you don't really believe unless you see it

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>2008
<mark>Journal</mark>Oxford Review of Education
Issue number2
Number of pages17
Pages (from-to)253-269
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This paper reports on an empirical study concerning educational professionals' understandings of self‐harm in primary school children. There is little research available about self‐harm in primary‐school aged children, and literature searches for the current study have revealed no research on primary school professionals' understandings of self‐harm in their pupils. This is remarkable given the role that such professionals play in pastoral care. The present qualitative research involved interviewing 15 staff members of six schools in the North of England and analysing transcribed data using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. The findings of this exploratory study suggest a cyclical relationship between the experience, understanding and awareness of self‐harm as described by primary school professionals. This research is presented as a springboard for improving understandings of how self‐harm is experienced and managed in primary schools. It is hoped that the findings might contribute to a long term goal of working with school communities to develop system‐level interventions that cultivate existing resources for addressing self‐harm in children.

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PG Intake 2003