Staff Wellbeing

Staff Health and Wellbeing – September 2020

We value and prioritise the mental and physical health of our staff more than ever. It  is one of the 7 key priorities in our School Improvement Plan.

Our Culture

  • Mental health and character education sit at the heart of much of what we do with the children. Staff and children are encouraged to discuss mental health and wellbeing.
  • Collaboration and teamwork are a strong feature of our school. Staff work together well, support each other and respect each other.
  • There is a culture of honesty and openness. Staff are encouraged to discuss, debate, challenge and suggest.
  • In addition to questionnaires from the Trust, this year we will send our own personalised school-level questionnaires. We will respond to feedback wherever possible.
  • Phase meetings have a standing agenda item to discuss wellbeing, support colleagues and wellbeing suggestions are encouraged.
  • Distributed leadership ensures that roles and responsibilities and shared and personal preferences and expertise are considered.
  • We want our staff to be physically and mentally well so that they can enjoy their job and perform to the best of their ability.
  • This year our staff meetings, CPD, assemblies and business meetings are deliberately not set in stone. Meetings will be relevant, timely and responsiveness to Covid developments and needs of staff and children.

Work Life Balance

  • This year we will minimise the expectation of displays and not introduce new initiatives or ideas that cause additional workload.
  • Carefully planned 1265 directed hours that gives time to all necessary tasks and duties.
  • Verbal feedback, rather than written marking is actively encouraged.
  • Staff are welcome to take PPA at home.
  • Staff are encouraged to leave site early-but only if this suits their way of working.
  • Staff are invited to ‘dial in’ to meetings if not in school.
  • All staff are encouraged to ask for additional release time if their workload becomes too high.
  • This year, unless we have concerns, performance management will focus on book scrutiny, discussion and progress, rather than lesson observations or learning walks.
  • Performance management objectives aim to support all staff in adapting to the changes required this year due to Covid-19 without unnecessary extra workload/targets added.
  • Reports to parents minimise extended comments from teachers.
  • Email is strongly discouraged outside of working hours. Replies to emails outside working hours are not expected.
  • A commitment to constantly reviewing and listening to ideas about reducing bureaucracy and workload.
  • An admin team that is able to support staff with photocopying and admin duties.

‘Thank Yous’

  • Our staffroom has a clear code of conduct and is kept clean, tidy and well stocked with tea, coffee and drinks without charge to staff.
  • A staff wellbeing board in the staffroom celebrates successes, shares ‘thank yous’ and give an opportunity for feedback.
  • We keep the fruit bowls stocked up in the staffroom and staff take it in turns to bring occasional treats in.
  • ‘Wellbeing weeks’ when we cancel all meetings and we do a Starbucks/McDonald’s run!

Mental Health

  • Our staff wellbeing board shares details of counselling and support services that staff are encouraged to use if need. The school will fund additional face-to-face counselling through Amica.
  • We have adult mental health first aiders on site. Details on the staff wellbeing board.
  • Sue, one of our mental health first aiders, sends regular ‘mental health awareness’ emails and updates our wellbeing board with information and support.
  • Although we cannot gather socially like we normally would, we look for ways to bond as a team and welcome suggestions.
  • Supervision and mentoring available for all our staff. DSLs, and those working with vulnerable children are given additional ‘time to talk’.
  • We have launched mindfulness sessions this year with Jo at Learnful. We have selected Learnful as all the resources go live each week on the website and no teacher preparation is required.
  • Our school dog, Dottie, gives us all a lift!
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