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Whole-school approach to supporting staff and student mental health and wellbeing

In this vlog, Dame Alison Peacock is joined by Lisa Fathers, Director of Teaching School & Partnerships at Bright Futures Educational Trust (BFET), and Anya, Student and Wellbeing Ambassador, to discuss how the BFET whole-school culture towards student and staff mental health has contributed during the COVID-19 outbreak.
They discuss:

  • The challenges that have arisen during a lockdown and the importance of investing time to maintain mental health and wellbeing.
  • How student and staff training to support others with mental health prior to lockdown has helped BFET during the crisis.
  • How Anya and other student wellbeing ambassadors are continuing their role during the crisis, talking about some of the activities they are undertaking to support fellow students remotely.
  • Lisa’s passion for mental health and wellbeing being linked to her passion for removing barriers to learning.
  • The taboo around mental health and how transparency is not where it needs to be yet. Bringing physical and mental health under one banner to allow everyone to talk more openly.
  • The BFET approach to mental health, including cross-sector partnerships with Youth Sports Trust, Greater Manchester Mentally Healthy Schools Programme, Place2Be, and 42nd Street. How these partnerships work in practice.
  • How physical activity can contribute to a healthier mental wellbeing, allowing staff and young people to function better and be more resilient.
  • The importance of art and how being creative can create joyful experiences. The ability to express yourself differently through art that otherwise might be difficult to express otherwise.
  • Physical and creative activities students at Altrincham Grammar School for Girls have been set during lockdown, how these activities have been made engaging and fun for students.
  • The challenges of transitioning back to normality, what to potentially expect, and advice around how to tackle these challenges with student and staff wellbeing in mind.

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