Part 2: A programme of professional development to promote and maintain resilience and personal effectiveness
This is the new publication from Nurture Group Network (NGN) available for use in schools and other services. It is a comprehensive resource which will hopefully become part of every institution’s approach to supporting the development and maintenance of staff mental health.
The need for a programme of support
We know that there is currently an increasing public awareness of the importance of young people’s mental health. This is to be applauded but also needs to be acted upon!
According to the 2013 survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL), the increase in number of children and young people in schools with behavioural, emotional, or mental health problems is coupled with worsened student behaviour. This survey also highlighted a deficit in training to support students with mental health problems. However, when equipped with the relevant skills, teachers have been shown to have results as least as positive as psychologists when implementing the same interventions for anxious children. In the current climate it is therefore more important than ever that we address these issues and set up systems of support that ensure individual well-being. This was, in essence, the rationale for the first Tool kit.
It is also vital that staff also use these skills as part of their approach to maintaining their own mental health, so a new focus to Part 2 of the Tool Kit is ensuring staff well-being.
Aiming for solutions
Well-being in schools is a fundamental prerequisite for quality teaching and learning. This does not happen without the right support mechanisms and mindsets for all involved in the teaching and learning process. It is therefore important that teachers and support staff are given the opportunity to reflect upon the emotional labour of the job, and to develop a genuine sense of confidence and a locus of control in the classroom context. This Tool Kit aims to help incorporate support circles, peer group supervision, and strategies from evidence based therapeutic approaches into CPD and training programmes – all with the aim of developing staff mental health.
Contents of the Tool Kit
Topics have been chosen to create a solution focussed resource grounded in Positive Psychology, which is easy and cost effective to deliver. The 20 sessions in this Tool Kit provide resources to enable staff to maintain and enhance their own wellbeing both personally and professionally. Each key topic provides a package containing information leaflets, strategies, skills-based activities, and a PowerPoint presentation. Each session also has detailed notes on delivery of the training.
Topics covered include:
- The Role of Emotional Literacy in Your Life
- How to be an Emotion Coach
- Using strategies from Cognitive Behaviour Therapy to build resilience
- Using Coaching to maintain Staff Well-being
- Developing Circles of support
About the author: Dr Tina Rae
Educational and Child Psychologist, Author and Educational Consultant
Dr Tina Rae has over 30 years’ experience working with children, adults, and families in both local authorities and specialist educational services. Tina has written extensively on topics such as well-being, anger and stress management, cognitive behavioural therapy, and youth offending and social skills development. Some of her publications to date can be accessed here, here, and here. Tina also contributes to national and international conferences, provides training courses and supervision for school based staff in both special and mainstream contexts, and Educational Psychology services across the country.