Explore these important wellbeing considerations for when students return to on-campus learning.
As students return to school gradually, schools can draw upon their existing approach to whole-school wellbeing. Relationships are central to belonging and connectedness in the school environment – a sustained focus on these foundations will always support student wellbeing.
Relationships are central to belonging and connectedness in the school environment.
There is a range of actions to support wellbeing that schools can take as students return to on-campus learning. These can include some of the following considerations:
Whole-school approach: support and guidance can be provided to staff as part of a whole-school approach. This guidance may include agreeing on consistent messages and responses to students and families. This conversation may also include an acknowledgement that staff will be modelling behaviours and reactions to students.
Supporting students: staff may need support to recognise signs and symptoms of students experiencing grief, loss, and trauma. This conversation might also include a reminder of the internal school policies and procedures for triaging students with wellbeing concerns.
Time to adjust: time may be needed to reconnect with students and staff before recommencing teaching and learning programs. Longer breaks, circle/class or tutor/wellbeing/pastoral time, meetings with stage or year coordinators, heads of house, wellbeing leaders and counsellor/psychologist advice will be important.
Keeping connected: connection, validation of feelings, empathy and student-led problem solving can support student wellbeing and learning. Routine and connections with school staff will increase student feelings of safety and security.
Social and emotional learning: PDHPE and Wellbeing staff collaboration can support students developing social and emotional learning (SEL) eg help-seeking, communication, empathy, and interpersonal skills. Explicit modelling and teaching of SEL skills, a reminder of school values and encouraging student voice will all support the transition back to school.
Connection, validation of feelings, empathy and student-led problem solving can support student wellbeing and learning. Routine and connections with school staff will increase student feelings of safety and security.
A comprehensive infographic around return to school wellbeing and additional wellbeing resources can be accessed via the Learning from Home Portal (wellbeing section).
For support related to whole-school wellbeing, please contact AISNSW Wellbeing Consultants.
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