Best Practice

Rebuilding hope post-Covid: Helping students to overcome despair

People who have hope generally have better developmental outcomes. In this four-part series, psychologist Dr Stephanie Thornton looks at building back hope as we emerge from the pandemic. Part two considers how we might support those teenagers waylaid by despair

There are good a-priori reasons to suppose that the Covid-19 pandemic has triggered despair in at least a percentage of the young (John, 2020), and that the consequences of such despair may be serious, and even fatal (Weishaar & Beck, 2009).

The first article in this series explored how we might identify individual teenagers suffering despair. This article, the second in the series, now looks at how we might offer them support.


REBUILDING HOPE POST-COVID: To read other articles in this series, visit


Supporting the despairing

The first prerequisite in supporting the despairing is to understand the specific trigger for that despair. For many of the young, the challenges of the pandemic have been practical: missing school and friends, struggling with home-schooling and so forth.

Register now, read forever

Thank you for visiting SecEd and reading some of our content for professionals in secondary education. Register now for free to get unlimited access to all content.

What's included:

  • Unlimited access to news, best practice articles and podcast

  • New content and e-bulletins delivered straight to your inbox every Monday and Thursday


Already have an account? Sign in here