Recovery planning must include an overhaul of staff and pupil wellbeing strategies
As we consider a return to school, recovery planning must include an overhaul of how we focus on staff and pupil wellbeing, Pam Shaw explains
It is estimated that one in eight 5–19-year-olds has at least one mental health disorder (Kessler et al, 2007; SecEd, 2018). These children are more likely than others to have special educational needs, and to have played truant or been excluded from school (NHS, 2018).
When we emerge from the Covid-19 crisis, the world will be a different place for these children. There is growing acceptance that, following lockdown, the ‘new normal’ could further expose the fragilities and inequalities facing young people's mental health and wellbeing. Children need schools to support their emotional health more than ever.
As pupils, parents and school staff consider a return to school, recovery planning will necessarily focus on closing the attainment gap, delivering the curriculum differently, and staff wellbeing and development.
Everyone returning to school will be in a different place to where they were before lockdown, both academically and emotionally. Schools must take this opportunity to make wellbeing a priority and lay a strong foundation of support that responds to these changing needs.
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