Parent Support with Wellbeing:
COVID-19 is having an impact on everyone’s daily lives. By following the guidelines on social distancing and staying at home you’re helping to protect yourself, family, NHS, and community, but a consequence might be that you feel isolated, worried, and anxious, or you could be concerned about your health, or the health of others.
In these uncertain times it’s important to take care of your mind as well as your body, and to make sure you get any support that you need. CAHMS have pulled together a number of fantastic resources for you to use, refer to or share with your family. There is a link below for you to access these.
Broughton Community Schools
Emotional Health and Wellbeing Statement
We know that the emotional health of children is the strongest predictor of happiness in adulthood and we want all of our children to grow up to be happy, confident, independent people who can contribute positively to society. Happier children learn better and generally perform better in school.
Conversely, poor mental health undermines educational attainment and life satisfaction. One in eight children and young people aged 5 to 19 have a diagnosable mental health disorder.
As importantly, the mental health of teaching staff impacts on children too, and teachers play a very important role in modelling positive emotional health. All staff also deserve to enjoy their job and feel supported.
Therefore, the emotional health and wellbeing of all members of Broughton Community Schools (including staff, children and parents) is fundamental to our philosophy and ethos ‘wellbeing for all’.
- To ensure that through the promotion of positive emotional health and wellbeing, children and young people are helped to understand, recognise and express their feelings, build their confidence and emotional resilience and therefore increase their capacity to learn.
- To increase the awareness, understanding and reduce stigma amongst children, staff and parents/carers of issues involving the emotional health and wellbeing of young people and to provide support at an early stage to any child who is or appears to be suffering from mental health issues.
Promoting positive emotional health and wellbeing:
The culture at Broughton Community Schools promotes children’s positive emotional health and wellbeing and avoids stigma by:
- Having a whole-school approach to promoting positive emotional health and wellbeing within an ethos of high expectations and constant support.
- Openly talking about and discussing positive mental health in class and assemblies, and promoting the importance of sharing difficult feelings and emotions with people we trust.
- Having a committed staff community that sets a whole school culture of positive emotional health and wellbeing, support and values.
- Ensuring high quality continuing professional development (CPD) for staff.
- Working closely with children, parents, carers and external agencies to effectively identify and support episodes of poor mental health and wellbeing.
- Promoting the development of individual resilience and tenacity in all areas of the curriculum.
- Having a designated space (‘The Bridge’ and ‘The Arc’) to support mental health and wellbeing in the school community.
- Being fully committed to; achieving (for the Infant School) and continuing (for the Junior School) the standards outlined for the Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools School Mental Health Award.
Our schools offer a range of services to help our children develop positive mental health and wellbeing, as well as additional support for those experiencing mental health difficulties. These include:
- Building positive parent/carer partnerships to enable early intervention to accessing mental health and wellbeing support and to allow for consistent strategy implementation within home and school to support the child.
- Having clear communication for parents/careers such as home-school books, visible staff at school drop-off, regular teacher contact, and pastoral support so that any changes can be identified and support given to child/ parent / carers as required.
- Training staff in Adult and Youth Mental Health First Aid so that teachers and support staff are well placed to spot changes in behaviour that might indicate a problem and offer support and guidance. Many things can cause a change in mental health including traumatic events (e.g. loss or separation, life changes, abuse, domestic violence or bullying).
- Using strategies (such as Care boxes in each class) which enable children to request to speak with a member of the pastoral team about a concern.
- Having a trained Senior Mental Health Lead and Wellbeing Officer to work 1:1 with children struggling in class with behaviour and/or emotional concerns.
- Creating a Behaviour policy which helps establish a positive school environment and support children in making the right choices which contributes to their own and others’ emotional wellbeing.
- Weekly values and wellbeing-focussed assemblies in order to raise awareness and understanding of what contributes to positive physical and mental health, and to provide strategies for children to look after themselves and each other.
- The Daily Mile, play meadow, experienced PE teacher, and wide array of sports clubs to boost children’s physical fitness which studies show positively impacts on children’s body-image, and physical and mental health.
- Mindfulness curriculum (Paws.b) delivered to Y4, Y5 and Y6, to help develop children’s attention, emotional self-regulation and wellbeing.
- Nurture UK trained staff running Nurture Groups for selected children, using an evidence-based programme to develop their social and emotional skills.
- Weekly wellbeing sessions provided for children identified as needing support with friendships, worries and self-esteem.
- Transition support for EYFS, Y2 within school and transition support for Y6 provided by outside agencies.
- Year 6 Peer Mentors available x3 lunchtimes a week in The Bridge – open to all children who need to talk (mentor training and ongoing support provided by Bucks Mind).
- Providing calming and restorative spaces for children to spend time in such as the newly refurbished library, the school garden, the forest school area, the outdoor reading area and The Bridge/ The Arc.
- Committed to implementing the OPAL play scheme to encourage physical activity and social and emotional skills.
- Constructive links with outside support and specialist agencies (e.g. school nurse, Bucks Mind, play therapist) to provide interventions for those with additional mental health needs.
Promoting emotional health and wellbeing of staff
The emotional health and wellbeing of staff is of paramount importance to effective running of any school. Not only does it directly impact the wellbeing of children but, as significant adults in children’s lives, teaching staff must set a good example and model positive emotional health. More than that, all staff deserve to enjoy their jobs and feel supported so they can enjoy long and enjoyable teaching careers. To this end, we offer a range of interventions and support to help promote the positive wellbeing of Broughton Staff. These include:
- Dedicated staff wellbeing team with representatives from a cross-section of the staff community. The team focus on the results of the Staff Wellbeing survey and also organise social events.
- No morning staff briefings at all so that staff have more time in class to get ready for the day ahead and only one staff meeting after school on a Wednesday.
- Teachers are allocated additional PPA time (4 hours for FT teachers, compared to standard 2.5hours) to reduce stress and help manage workload.
- A report-writing day where class teachers can work from home for a day to write their summer reports.
- A biannual staff wellbeing survey to monitor how our staff are doing, and then agreeing actions collectively to improve their working lives.
- A newly refurbished staffroom with comfy seating, situated in a quiet location on the school site.
- Tea, coffee squash, biscuits and fruit in the staff room.
- A supportive SLT who regularly check-in with staff informally and through performance management.
- Realistic and manageable planning and marking policies that do not place too much pressure on staff or increase workload unnecessarily.
- Wellbeing time can be taken weekly (as late start or early finish) or as a half day every term. This is in agreement with staff team and SLT.
- Employee Assistance Programme through Schools Advisory Service (SAS), offering all staff access to services such as; counselling and mindfulness, nurse support, GP phone consultations and physiotherapy.
- All staff entitled to access the Buckinghamshire Employee Discount Scheme with discounts for childcare, gym membership and various restaurants.
Any member of staff, child, parent/carer concerned about the mental health and wellbeing of a child should speak to the class teacher in the first instance. The class teacher will monitor and support them, and refer to the Senior Leadership Team for additional support or for further intervention.