< Knowledge center Anxiety & Stress for Youth

Identification, Prevention & Intervention in Pupils with Anxiety

Are you also participating in the SPIL-program? Schools, teachers and care workers who would like to think along or join us are more than welcome! Since February 1, teachers and care workers can contact our telephone helpline +31 715 275 464. For more information, read below.

Radio LEF made a podcast about the SPIL-program: listen here.


Worldwide, stress and anxiety complaints are the most common mental health problems and often arise during childhood. These complaints usually do not go away by themselves, and if they are left untreated, these complaints can lead to loneliness, other psychological disorders, substance abuse, social problems, deteriorated school performance or school dropout.

Stress and anxiety complaints are frequently not recognized in time, because they often express themselves in withdrawn behavior, school refusal or other behavioral problems, whereby underlying fears are not always thought of. When juveniles only receive treatment when the complaints escalate, a long and costly treatment is commonly necessary, for which long waiting lists exist.

Pupils are hindered in their development, both inside and outside the school, by stress and anxiety complaints. Teachers and care workers would like to support them, but sometimes experience a lack of time, space, knowledge, and skills to pick up the signals in time and to deal with them properly.


The aim of the SPIL-program is to detect and remedy stress and anxiety complaints in children and youth at an early stage, in close collaboration with schools in Leiden. With the SPIL-program we want to create a safe learning climate and we want to stimulate healthy social-emotional development and we want to prevent school dropout.

We will start with focus groups of teachers and care workers who work at primary and secondary schools in Leiden. In these focus groups we will investigate in which ways we can best meet the support need of teachers and care workers. What do they need in terms of knowledge, training and support to deal effectively with signals of stress and anxiety in the classroom? And what is needed for their students?

As a result of the focus groups, we have developed a telephone helpline for teachers and care workers, we are setting up workshops, and we generate other elements which fulfill the support need of teachers and care workers. In addition, we will together with schools, identify students who could benefit from early intervention. We offer short-term, accessible, innovative, and scientifically substantiated interventions, which focus on social anxiety, specific phobias and public speaking.

With this program we aim to work towards a sustainable and structural collaboration between schools in Leiden and the Knowledge Center Anxiety and Stress in Youth. Together we work on new knowledge and interventions that can be applied rapidly in education.


From February 1 2021, the Knowledge Center Anxiety and Stress in Youth will offer a telephone helpline for teachers and care workers in and around the school. They can call when they have questions about fear in students, such as: How do you recognize fear? What can you do in the classroom? Where can a student get appropriate help?

We can be reached on +31 715 275 464 and have open office hours on every working day from 9.00 - 17.00. You can call for short questions (max. 10 min).

Would you like to submit a question or issue that requires more time? For this you can call during the open office hours or send an e-mail to kas@fsw.leidenuniv.nl.

Of course you can also submit your questions to us by e-mail!


The program is still under development, so you can find more information on this website during the term (2020-2022). Do you want to think along with us, participate or know more? Please contact our daily project manager via kas@fsw.leidenuniv.nl.

Partners: Municipality of Leiden, Leiden Kennisstad, Leiden Education Fieldlab (LEF), Stedelijk Gymnasium Leiden, Vlietland College, De Singel, Da Vinci College Lammenschans, LUBEC (Leiden University).


newsletter September 2021
newsletter July 2021
newsletter April 2021
newsletter February 2021
newsletter December 2020


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