UNITED KINGDOM

Bereaved parents say student suicide review has shortcomings

Bereaved parents whose children have killed themselves while at university have criticised the government’s planned review of student suicides in England, describing it as “a slap in the face” for families, writes Sally Weale for The Guardian.

The higher education minister, Robert Halfon, announced the national review earlier this year amid mounting concern over student mental health and a series of suicides that attracted widespread coverage in the media.

However, parents say there are “significant shortcomings” in the proposed terms of reference for the student suicide review. They say the timeframe is too short, looking primarily at suicides and “near misses” – a term they describe as insensitive – in the 2023-24 academic year. They are also concerned that the review as proposed will not be sufficiently rigorous or independent, and will be limited instead to a meta-analysis of internal university reports into a student’s suicide, produced by the very institutions that many parents blame for not taking adequate care of their child.
Full report on The Guardian site