Wellbeing is coming to the school classroom
Nuffield Health is working in partnership with Wood Green School in Oxfordshire on a ground-breaking two year school wellbeing pilot. Beginning in September 2015, the pilot will seek to provide more effective support and infrastructure to improve the physical and emotional wellbeing of both pupils and staff at the school.
Our commitment to the pilot follows the findings of a joint study with think tank 2020health. The study looked at the need for a Head of Wellbeing in every UK secondary school. It highlighted significant areas of concern and unmet need - including low levels of exercise, high levels of obesity and poor emotional wellbeing – which could be vastly improved with dedicated, coordinated support within a school setting.
A dedicated Head of Wellbeing will be seconded to the school and begin by developing a health and wellbeing strategy to meet the needs of the whole school. As part of a range of services, a lifestyle assessment will be offered to all teachers and a unique health check to pupils, with particular focus on nutrition, exercise and emotional wellbeing.
Lancaster University’s The Work Foundation is providing independent evaluation over the two year pilot. This will include measuring how health and wellbeing interventions improve both individual physical and psychological health, as well as school outcomes. Alongside these measures The Work Foundation will also be evaluating the process of the intervention, looking at what is working well and where improvements are being made. But just as importantly where any barriers to health and wellbeing interventions are and what can be done to remove these to ensure best outcomes for the staff, students and the local community.
Department of Health's Expert Advisor on Health and Work, Professor Dame Carol Black says:
Our emotional wellbeing affects every part of our lives, physically and mentally. Importantly, half of mental health problems begin before people leave school. We believe that with dedicated support in the school environment, both for teachers and pupils, poor emotional health and physical health could be greatly improved. This leading project at Wood Green School will show what can be done.
This exciting initiative has the potential to transform whole school wellbeing. So follow our journey with Wood Green School over the next two years as we post regular updates and check out our tips page that can help you introduce new ways of improving wellbeing into your school.
What does wellbeing mean to you?
We spoke to children from several UK schools to see what wellbeing means to them. Watch our video to see what they said.
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