Safe from Harm

This month’s blog delves into the importance of a positive whole school ethos around mental health and that it is our statutory duty to do so. I had planned to write about how, as a mental health lead, we can help teachers who do not ‘get it’ – mental health that is. However, what I […]

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What do we mean by ‘a whole school approach to mental health’?

I hear the phrase ‘whole school approach to mental health’ almost weekly in conversations with organisations, schools and at conferences. It is usually in the context of the importance of this being a solution to rising mental health issues. Everyone agrees – we need a solution that isn’t just a quick fix or one-off intervention. […]

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“We thought we knew our kids, we really don’t”

I hear this common phrase from schools quite often, usually after they have undertaken some form of whole school group mental health assessment or screening e.g. the 3 houses tool, SDQ, WEMWEBS or Boxhall profile (see link below for more information). Oftentimes these schools have really strong pastoral care and support in place, so why should they […]

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Ofsted

The new OFSTED Framework 2019 and the links to mental health in schools – updated October 2019

Here is a brief guide to the new OFSTED framework and the links to mental health and well-being.  I’m going to mention the changes to the framework and talk about some of the inferences, my opinion and interpretation of the document. There are 4 judgement areas: quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development, leadership […]

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Teaching ‘calm’ – skills for anxious moments

How often do you find yourself telling pupils and children to calm down? Once a week, once a month or daily? Usually when I ask this question in training sessions the answer is several times a day.

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Relationships are more influential than intervention

Thinking of another intervention in school to improve progress?  Then consider a whole school approach to developing relationships. It costs nothing other than time, is sustainable and something which will have a positive impact on all abilities.

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Recommended Read: The Goldfish Boy

A year or so ago I recommended a book which I think provides a positive step forward in reducing mental health stigma and gives children an insight into a mental illness. I picked it up again recently, and still think it comes close to the top of my list of recommended reads for children of this age.

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