Mental health is a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community. (World Health Organization 2015)
At SPWT and SPWF we intend to raise awareness amongst staff, parents, and students whilst ensuring that staff are adequately prepared to support students as needed in our organisation. We aim to help tackle misconceptions and promote positive mental health amongst staff, students and the whole community and ensure that robust and adequate systems are embedded within our organisation to support and deal with serious issues when they arise.
Raising awareness about mental health amongst our young people will enable them to become resilient and develop their existing aptitudes across our graduate strands: communication, investigation, networking, participation, scholarship and vision.
In addition to promoting positive mental health, we aim to recognise and respond to mental ill health. Around 1 in 4 people at some stage in their lives will suffer from a mental health issue. Some of the most common ones are: depression, anxiety, stress, eating disorders and self-harm. Effective implementation of our mental health policy and procedures will help us to ensure that we promote a safe and stable environment for students and staff affected both directly and indirectly by mental health issues.
Emotional health and wellbeing promotes school success and improvement by:
- contributing positively to priorities such as enhancing teaching and learning, raising standards, promoting social inclusion and improving behaviour and attendance
- involving students more fully in the operation of the school
- helping students and staff feel happier, more confident and more motivated
- helping to meet legal, ethical and curricular obligations
Promoting Positive Mental Health and Wellbeing for Students
The skills, knowledge and understanding needed by our students to keep themselves and others physically and mentally healthy and safe are included as part of our personal development curriculum, tutor programme and assemblies as well as cross-curricular links.
We ensure that the content of lessons is determined by the specific needs of the cohort. The structured and tailored teaching of social and emotional life-skills and values throughout school life has the potential to increase emotional wellbeing and academic achievement. The teaching of mental health and emotional wellbeing issues help our students gain a sense of belonging and makes them feel safe.
It also provides knowledge and encourages positive attitudes in regards to students managing their lives in a healthy way. By doing so, it will enable them to develop their confidence, self-esteem and deepen their understanding. Relationship and Sex Education (RSE) provides opportunities for reflection and promotes good mental health and wellbeing, emotional health and physical health. Where appropriate, it is helpful to draw up an individual care plan for students needing additional learning and/or wellbeing support. It will be drawn up involving the student, the parents, SEND and relevant health professionals.
SPWT like the rest of society is made up of a wide range of values, beliefs and attitudes. SPWT is committed to equality, respect and dignity for all including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGTBGI). The school follows the SRE guidance available from the DfE website. (See other appropriate policies e.g. equalities).
We will ensure that staff, students and parents are aware of sources of support within school and in the local community.
We will display relevant sources of support in communal areas such as tutor rooms, staff room, Key stage offices, the main atrium and toilets and will regularly highlight sources of support to students and staff. We also display the safeguarding team details and hold and share information about local sources of help.
If any student discloses that they are thinking of harming themselves, others or if someone is harming them, the safeguarding team must be notified immediately.
Staff should be honest with the students in regards to the issue of confidentiality and its limitations. If it is necessary to pass on concerns about a student, for reasons of harm and safety, where possible this should be discussed with the student first before breaking that confidentiality.
If a child gives reason to believe that there may be underlying child protection issues, parents should not be informed, but the DSL Ms Hannora Loveday or the Primary safeguarding team –Clare Lynam and Adam Bridle must be informed immediately.
Sharing what a child has confided with you should not be shared with other members of staff unless in the best interest of the child. (Refer to the Safeguarding Policy for further details)