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Maple Cross JMI & Nursery

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Supporting staff wellbeing

At Maple Cross, we are committed to ensuring all staff are cared for and their well-being is not negatively impacted by workload or pressure. We have a dedicated team who ensure well-being and mental health remains central to policies, procedures and our working ethos. 

Mental Health Leads - Hannah Trickett and Katy Stickley
Governor responsible for Mental Health - Tony McConnell

Why well-being matters?

Good staff wellbeing is essential for cultivating a mentally healthy school, for retaining and motivating our brilliant staff and for promoting pupil wellbeing and attainment. It's a win win and the proof that our community expectations are lived by all. 

Wellbeing is all about our holistic health, including the physical and emotional. When we have good levels of wellbeing we feel that life is in balance and that we can generally cope well. We feel motivated and engaged, we’re resilient and able to deal effectively with daily troubles, as well as ’bounce back’ from life’s challenges.

As a team we juggle a multitude of different tasks and demands, it is important that everyone is given the right emotional and practical support so that they can, in turn, support our pupils.

In addition to having a positive impact on colleagues and pupils, staff wellbeing can improve performance and job satisfaction, which can lead to reduced staff turnover. It can also help to reduce absence (both short and long term), increase productivity and promote staff engagement.

Actions to promote well-being

Here is our ten point plan to support teacher well-being (credit to the Anna Freud Centre)
1.  Have a mental health lead
2.  Include staff wellbeing in our mental health policy
3.  Promote openness about mental health in our school
4.  Offer supervision and encourage group discussions
5.  Signposting to support services
6.  Reduce workload wherever possible
7.  Provide reflective spaces at time of stress
8.  Promoting staff social events
9.  Starting an annual staff well-being survey
10. Including staff well-being on weekly CPD meetings and Governor agendas

What to do when it all gets too much

Every now and then our well-being can be negatively impacted and we can struggle to bounce back and easily. Here are some tips to support. 
  1. Use the counselling service available to staff through education mutual
  2. Speak out and ask for help 

Managing anxiety

  1. Ground yourself physically. This could be on a chair, the floor or against a wall
  2. Breathe. Breathe in as slowly, deeply and gently as you can, through your nose. Close your eyes and breathe out slowly, deeply and gently through your mouth and count steadily from one to five on each in-breath and each out-breath.
  3. Notice your senses. Take notice of the things that you can see, hear, smell and feel. Name them in your mind. This can be very useful to try and re-orientate ourselves and bring us into the present moment.
  4. Be with someone. Where possible, don’t go through panic alone. Fine a friend or family member who can talk to you and help you to feel grounded and safe. 
  5. Reach out for support. The Anna Freud Centre provide a free and confidential helpline. You can call 24/7 for emotional support: 08000 562 561. Please don't wait until things are really difficult for you or you're in crisis to ring that number. Of course you can ring then but it's very important to support at an earlier stage whenever possible.