Mental Health and Wellbeing
The MHAWB Team
Hi, I’m Mr Keefe and I am the Senior Mental Health and Wellbeing Lead for Muschamp Primary School, however, I certainly don’t work alone! At Muschamp, we prioritise and understand the importance of positive mental health so much so, that we work as a team to promote this within our whole school community – the mental health of our pupils, staff and parents/carers is equally important to us.
We truly believe that making good academic and personal progress, goes hand in hand with children having an understanding of mental health and promoting and supporting positive wellbeing. We also believe that our actions speak louder than our words; with this in mind, we are constantly striving to embed and improve the things we already have in place, as well as look to develop new ideas and initiatives. As a school, we are currently going through the process of gaining the, ‘Wellbeing Award for School’, which is organised by Optimus Education and the National Children’s Bureau. Our goal is to achieve sustainability in this area.
Here are some of the things we currently have in place at Muschamp…
- Mental Health First Aiders – we are extremely proud to say that we have invested in having a large number of staff (including teachers, teaching assistants, midday supervisors and office staff) who have completed a nationally recognised, two-day training course. This helps staff to recognise causes and signs of changes in the mental health and wellbeing of others. This means that they can act upon these quickly and put things in place.
- Listening Lounge – we have a fantastic room set up, where children and adults can chat in a relaxed atmosphere. This is a room which is often used by our Mental Health First Aiders. The children can ask to speak to someone about any worries or feelings they can have in this room in particular.
- ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants) – at Muschamp, we are lucky to have a fantastic team of teaching assistants who are trained in providing emotional and social skills support to children. We have a dedicated ELSA room too, with lots of fantastic resources. This team is led by Ms Nicol and Miss Bennet. If you feel your child would benefit from this, please contact one of us.
- Young Carers – we have many children, who for a variety of reasons, are considered to be carers for someone that they live with. As a school, we are so proud of what these children do, but also recognise that it is a big emotional responsibility for them. For this reason, Miss Bennett is our designated ‘Young Carers School Representative’ and works closely to celebrate and support these children.
- Mental Health Champions (MHCs) – this is a group of almost 70, Y5/6 children, who are an absolute asset to our school and are at the very heart of our passion for promoting positive mental health and wellbeing. These children took part in thorough training programme, provided by a company called, ‘One Goal’. Our MHCs are involved in a variety of things during the year, however, they are mostly known for the daily support they provide in classes throughout the school each morning. They help the children to check in on the wellbeing display in each class, listen to the children read, share strategies for regulating feelings, and probably most importantly - they chat to the children and be good role models for positive mental health and wellbeing.
- Morning check in boards – each class has a morning check in board, which is related to something known as, ‘Zones of Regulation’. This is where children can indicate how they are feeling when they arrive in the morning. There is an optimum zone to be in (the green zone), in order to sustain positive mental health and achieve well in school. We teach children that it is normal that they may experience different emotions and feelings, but that it is good to have strategies to ‘regulate’ these feelings. This is something our MHCs are very involved in when they visit classes in the morning. Each class also has a ‘worry box’, where they can pop a note in about any concerns they have. Classrooms have areas where children can sit if they want to relax or calm down too. We also teach calming and relaxing strategies as part of our standard classroom practice and have a greater focus on national wellbeing days and weeks.
- Other provisions - although our aim is to promote the idea of positive mental health, we are really fortunate to have many other things in place within our school, which children can access if needed. Some of these have already been mentioned. We also have a Sensory Room, as well as some other sensory areas, in school. In addition to this, we have access to a wide range of therapists who work within our setting and who we can seek support and advice from.
- Whole community support - we are not just here for the children – we believe in supporting our wider community. With this in mind, please feel free to contact one of us if we can offer you and your families any support, or signpost you in the direction of support.
To summarise, we truly believe that a child’s mental health is equally as important as their physical health and academic achievements and therefore, deserves the same quality of support.
If you, your child or your family need to explore ways in which we can offer support, then please contact us.
Creative Education Link
Please click on this link to view online parent support on a range of subjects.
A handy link for support with loss and grief.