Our academies are partaking in some special training over the coming months to ensure our leaders are creating mentally-healthy schools for all. In this blog piece, Oliver Lougheed, the lead on this project, talks about the importance of having strong mental health awareness and what the training covers for a school setting.
Research tells us that 10% of all pupils will have a serious or diagnosable mental health condition at some point in their education, and a further 30-40% will have a lower level or short term problem. In addition it is widely reported that staff wellbeing in schools is still low, and mental health in our communities is seemingly constantly in the news.
Improving the wellbeing and mental health of pupils is proven to have a positive impact on their attainment, attendance and behaviour. You don't need us to tell you that mental health is a vast area of work, with many different specialisms, disciplinary team members and training needs to access, but it can often be a confusing area for school staff to tackle. Without a skilled mental health leader in your academy you could be missing out on simple ways to support your families and pupils, missing funding opportunities and spending more time dealing with problems in a reactive way, rather than working proactively to avoid issues.
With our programme, mental health leaders will work to ensure that their wider community, families, staff and pupils are all having their needs met and being supported to work towards a feeling of wholeness and wellness - part of the wider Oasis vision for inclusion, community and personal transformation.
The 2 day Leading a Mentally Healthy School training is being funded centrally by Oasis Community Learning. It supports attendees to self assess their current work, plan for future improvements, outlines a range of practical strategies, looks at the Signs and Symptoms of mental ill health, considers you staff CPD and maps out the wider training offer within Oasis to support this work. In addition our colleagues will spend two days picking up tips from colleagues in other academies and from our trainer who has delivered this training to over 90 schools now.
If you are an educator, or even an employer - when was the last time you really looked at how mentally-friendly your working environment is?