• School;
  • adolescence;
  • emotion;
  • interviewing

Background:  Emotional wellbeing of young people has high global and national priority. UK high schools are under pressure to address this but lack evidence-based guidelines.

Method:  Students (N=23) (aged 11–16 years) and staff (N=27) from three urban UK high schools participated in qualitative interviews to explore the feasibility and acceptability of an approach to emotional wellbeing support. Key components were: self-referral, guided self-help, and delivery by school pastoral and support staff.

Findings:  Confidentiality, emotional support, effectiveness and delivery modes were important to students. Organisational values influenced feasibility.

Conclusions:  Understanding a school’s moral and operational framework can enhance the development of suitable emotional wellbeing support.