HeadStart celebrated alongside a few schools who successfully achieved their Gold Standard award at the end of the Summer term.
We wanted to share how using the Resilience Framework and embedding robust whole school approaches to support emotional health and wellbeing has an impact on school delivery.
At Macmillan Academy we are delighted to have achieved the HeadStart gold award. We have been working closely with the team at HeadStart to develop our provision in supporting our students with their mental wellbeing. The HeadStart team have delivered sessions to small groups of students in our academy to support with anxiety and exam stress which have been invaluable in supporting them at challenging times. The team have also worked with us to create a mental health policy and strategy so that we feel confident that we can improve this important aspect of our work further. Thanks to HeadStart we also have a team of Year 9 students who are trained to support their peers with mental health concerns which is a fabulous addition to our provision. Our last Ofsted inspection highlighted the work that we have done on mental health and it was commented that ‘pupils speak highly of how staff raise awareness of mental health.’ The team at HeadStart have been a key component in helping us to improve the awareness of mental health and wellbeing amongst our whole school community.
Andy Jordan – Deputy Headteacher and Mental Health Lead
We began by including Health and Wellbeing on our Academy Improvement Plan with the intention of developing the health and wellbeing of pupils, physically and mentally, to ensure that learning opportunities were maximised, enabling all pupils to achieve outcomes. This has continued each year with all stakeholders valuing the time and work given to prioritizing both pupil and staff mental health and wellbeing.
Staff from the HeadStart Team came into school to discuss the HeadStart School Standard which was then launched to staff. This quickly followed with introducing the initiative to Key Stage 2 pupils; this included facilitating 20 hours HeadStart training for Y5 pupils. Target pupils were identified as HeadStarters, who were then trained and able to work alongside an accredited pathway. This has continued year on year and pupils are confident and able in supporting their peers throughout the school day.
A key aspect for us was developing pupils’ resilience in all aspects of learning. A staff meeting was held focussing on emotional awareness and a whole school Academic Resilience Audit was undertaken. This ensured that staff were aware of the aspects of Academic Resilience and allowed them to plan activities across the school day and within the curriculum. We also appointed a Safeguarding and Pastoral Lead who worked closely with the DHT to set up a Pastoral Team. This worked closely with the HeadStart team and ensured that we achieved the Gold Standard.
We have now achieved the Gold standard and recognise the difference this initiative has played in ensuring that pupils, parents and staff are well supported and able to ask for help when needed.
Deputy Head – Green Lane Primary Academy
Published: September 26