Supporting Mental Health & Wellbeing
At Bishop Loveday Primary School, our aim is to care for and develop the whole child educationally, emotionally, spiritually, morally and physically. As well as caring for their education we also care for their mental health and wellbeing and feel that it is essential to provide children with information to enable them to make life long, well-informed decisions about their diet and health.
We aim to promote positive mental health and wellbeing of every member of our school community and recognise how important mental health and wellbeing is to our lives, as is physical health. We recognise that children’s mental health and overall wellbeing can affect their learning and achievement.
A key aspect of our role in school is to ensure that children are able to manage times of change and stress, and that they are supported to reach their potential and to access help when they need it. We also have a role to ensure that children learn about what they can do to maintain positive mental health, what can affect their mental health, how they can help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues, and where they can go if they need help and support. Our Welfare Officer provides nurture sessions and one-to-one support for children. Our Welfare Officer is a trained Therapeutic Mentor and is skilled in supporting children and families who have experienced domestic violence, anxiety, bereavement and other life experiences that impact emotional well-being. The Mental Health Schools Team also provide whole class, small group or individual support.
Positive wellbeing is promoted through the curriculum and all school activities. Through a carefully planned approach to PSHE our pupils are helped to acquire the knowledge and develop the skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy, independent lives, and to become resilient, informed and responsible citizens. We understand the positive impact of physical activity on mental well-being. Our pupils all enjoy 2 hours of PE each week and are encouraged to take part in extra-curricular activities, both within and outside school.
Whole school events are held including Mental Health Awareness Week in May, World Mental Health Day in October, and Anti-bullying Week in November. During these events, the focus is on mindfulness and resilience with the purpose of teaching children strategies for dealing with anxiety and copying with changes.
We monitor the well-being of our pupil-premium and vulnerable children. Our Premium lead is part of the Senior Leadership Team. We are also proud to hold the Oxfordshire Caremark, for good practice and provision for looked after children.
At Bishop Loveday, we recognise the expertise and support that available within the community and ensure that our children, families and staff can benefit from this. We work closely with the Mental Health charity Place2Be, and a Place2Be councillor works at our school two days a week, working with children on a 1:1 basis, in small groups and to support teachers during the school day. Place2Be also support parents - more information can be found here.
We also work with BUPA to provide support for staff and work with a number of local and national teams, including the Mental Health Schools Team (MHST), Local Community Support Service (LCSS) and Standing in the Gap, an Early Intervention Mental Health Charity, helping pre-school and primary aged children manage big emotions, such as fear, anxiety, anger and grief.