Learning & Development
Mental Health and Wellbeing
At Base Academy, supporting the mental health and wellbeing of our whole school community including pupils, staff and parents/carers is at the heart of what we do. We have agreed that wellbeing is a state of being comfortable, healthy and happy. We know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. Everyone has a role to play in promoting positive health and wellbeing across school. Children, staff and parent/carers are encouraged to talk about their feelings and to ask for help when they need it.
In line with our mission statement,, we strive to provide the children with a happy place to learn, but also look for ways that we can develop our children into life-long happy and healthy adults. We use the Lancashire Scheme for Learning, supplemented with the SEALs programme to help the children develop life skills and their awareness of mental health, sex and relationships and physical wellbeing. We use a wide variety of outside agencies to help support the delivery of our curriculum as and where it is appropriate.
Please see our Mental Health in School Policy for more information.
During the Autumn Term 2020, we began our journey towards the Wellbeing Award for Schools (WAS).
The aim of the award is to ensure schools promote emotional wellbeing and positive mental health across the whole-school community. Miss Tyrer is the award co-ordinator and other members of the teaching/ non teaching staff and governors form part of the Wellbeing “Change” team.
There are eight objectives which we have to evidence to gain the award:
- The school is committed to promoting and protecting emotional wellbeing and mental health by achieving the Wellbeing Award for Schools.
- The school has a clear vision and strategy for promoting and protecting emotional wellbeing and mental health, which is communicated to all involved with the school.
- The school has a positive culture which regards emotional wellbeing and mental health as the responsibility of all.
- The school actively promotes staff emotional wellbeing and mental health.
- The school prioritises professional learning and staff development on emotional wellbeing and mental health.
- The school understands the different types of emotional and mental health needs across the school and has systems in place to respond appropriately.
- The school actively seeks the ongoing participation of the whole-school community in its approach to emotional wellbeing and mental health.
- The school works in partnerships with other schools, agencies and available specialist services to support emotional wellbeing and mental health.
For more information on the award, please visit https://www.awardplace.co.uk/award/was
As a school, we are keen to support and help look after the mental health of parents/carers. We have carried out a number of activities this year to promote wellbeing and we have more planned for the next academic year:
Mrs Whittaker and Mrs Driver (Head of School at Red Lane) are trained Mental Health First Aiders. This means they have been trained to have an in depth understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing. Please speak to one of them if you are concerned about your mental health as they will be able to guide you to further support.
- During Parents’ Evening in Summer 2020, information leaflets containing information on various mental health conditions will be available.
- Wellbeing Champions – We are looking to have dedicated parents who act as Wellbeing Champions. They will have important role in school and are helping to reduce the stigma around mental health.
- In Summer 2020 we hope to host our first wellbeing coffee morning. The aim is to provide other parents and carers with the opportunity to meet new people and to discuss ways we can look after our wellbeing. We have more coffee mornings planned next year.
We are keen to ensure emotional wellbeing remains high profile in our school and we are working towards reducing the stigma around mental health. The children take part in a number of activities to help promote good wellbeing and mental health including:
SEALs weeks - We deliver the SEALs programme across school which aims to develop the underpinning qualities and skills that help promote positive behaviour and effective learning. It focuses on five social and emotional aspects of learning: self-awareness, managing feelings, motivation, empathy and social skills.
The materials help children develop skills such as understanding another’s point of view, working in a group, sticking at things when they get difficult, resolving conflict and managing worries. They build on effective work already in place in the many primary schools who pay systematic attention to the social and emotional aspects of learning through whole-school ethos, initiatives such as circle time or buddy schemes, and the taught personal, social and health education (PSHE) and Citizenship curriculum.
The materials are organised into seven themes: New Beginnings, Getting on and falling out, Say no to bullying, Going for goals!, Good to be me, Relationships and Changes.
- Each class from Reception to Year 6 chooses two MasefieldTriers of the Week. The aim is to recognise positive choices and enable children to accept positive feedback.
- Peer Mentors spend time on both the KS1 and KS2 playground at lunchtime to encourage children to play together nicely and to talk to children who are feeling sad or lonely.
- We have a counsellor in school who delivers 1:1 sessions as and when appropriate.
- We have theme weeks such as ‘Mental Health week’ and “Healthy Living Week” which are built into a annual calendar of events. During these weeks, outside agencies are invited into school to enhance our provision.
- Assemblies are regularly linked to mental health and wellbeing.
- Year 5 take part in the Healthy Relationship programme provided by Fort Alice which is “an early intervention educational programme aimed at Years 5 and 6 children, offering a minimum of four one hour teaching sessions which are mapped to the SEALS and RSE curriculum guidance. Each session incorporates a diverse range of interactive activities using resources specifically developed to ensure learner engagement through the use of games, discussions, video and role play” Specialist Children’s Workers with expertise in Domestic Abuse deliver the programme, which has a scheme of work and individual lesson plans.
Seven Steps to Wellbeing
Be social and get together with others.
Be active and do regular exercise
Have a hobby, keep learning!
Take notice of the world around you and be reflective
Eat a healthy, balanced diet
Be kind and give help to others
Further information on how to look after your mental health can be found on the following websites:
Where to get further help and support
If you're experiencing mental health problems or need urgent support, there are lots of places you can go to for help.
Telephone: 020 7089 5050 (general enquiries)
Telephone: 0808 802 5544 (parents helpline, for any adult with concerns about the mental health of a child or young person)
National charity committed to improving the mental health of all babies, children and young people. Provides information for both parents and young people.
Telephone: 0800 1111
ChildLine is a private and confidential service for children and young people up to the age of nineteen. You can contact a ChildLine counsellor for free about anything - no problem is too big or too small.
Telephone: 116 123 (24 hours a day, free to call)
Provides confidential, non-judgemental emotional support for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including those that could lead to suicide. You can phone, email, write a letter or in most cases talk to someone face to face.
Rethink Mental Illness Advice Line
Telephone: 0300 5000 927 (9.30am - 4pm Monday to Friday)
Email: online contact form
Provides expert advice and information to people with mental health problems and those who care for them, as well as giving help to health professionals, employers and staff.