According to figures from the Health and Safety Executive, teaching is one of the most stressful jobs you can have in Britain (HSE, 2017) and thousands of teachers in England are on long-term stress-leave (TES, 11th January 2018). In addition, with mental health issues affecting so many children and young people, teachers are often in the best position to recognise when their students are struggling.
Many of us are familiar with the aircraft safety briefing that tells us to always fit our own oxygen mask before helping others. This metaphor can help us to remember that those who work with children and young people can only be fully effective in their role if they prioritise their own wellbeing (TES, 22nd January 2018). Schools can actively help their school staff to care for themselves, to reduce stress and increase productivity, which will ultimately have a positive impact on our young people. If staff are not able to manage their own mental health, this clearly has an impact on performance and pupil mental health.
Staff support programmes
YMCA Trinity Group have developed a range of programmes to support staff in a variety of settings including schools and workplaces. These include the following:
- Thrive App – We have teamed up with app developers to launch a 24/7 self-help support service for all school staff and students. It is clinically proven to help prevent, detect and treat common mental health issues and can also provide valuable insight into the needs of staff by measuring their well-being and giving you rich data on a termly basis. We can also tailor it to link with any existing Employee Assist Programmes if required. You can find more information on our Thrive App page. The app is also available to businesses, albeit in a different package, so please get in touch to find out more.
- Direct Support – With mental health issues continuing to rise, more is needed to support staff that are struggling. Many settings do
not know where to start when it comes to offering professional support. Whilst the app and existing telephone based counselling are useful, some will always prefer face to face support. Our team of fully qualified counsellors
can provide bespoke support on a credit based system, or by providing more regular access using our tried and tested Day Rate model. This could include any of the following, with the ultimate aim of reducing staff absence
and increasing productivity:
- Access to face to face counselling for those that need it using a credit based system
- A central held bank of credits to be used as required on a referral basis
- Additional ‘drop-in’ sessions made available on a weekly/fortnightly basis for low level concerns or advice
For prices, please go to the how to get involved page.
- Reflective Supervision – Working with people to promote mental health can be demanding and complex. We offer supervision for school staff and supervision training for lead professionals. Regular, professional supervision can support reflection, good decision-making, self-care and effective signposting. It can be of benefit to all, and especially those in senior or
- Raise standards and quality of practice
- Increase knowledge and wellbeing to reduce staff stress
- Stimulate creativity and resilience in practice
- All sessions are person-centred, confidential, and comply with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) Ethical Framework.
We can offer:
- A series of 1.5hr group supervision sessions either virtually or face to face for up to 4 people.
- A series of 1hr individual supervision sessions either virtually or face to face.
- A tailored programme of supervision and/or reflective practice for wider staff.
Virtual: From £55 for 1to1 (1hr) or £100 for a group of up to 4 people (1.5hrs)
Face to Face: From £60 for 1to1 (1hr) or £125 for a group of up to 4 people (1.5hrs)
- Training –
One of the challenges amongst school staff is being able to cope with the needs of children and young people. By providing access to mental health training, staff will increase their confidence to do their job, and therefore reduce the stress that this brings. It also has the added benefit of indirectly supporting their own mental health by addressing specific issues that might affect staff and those they work with.
By following our competency framework and training needs analysis, we can tailor courses to need. Go to our mental health training pages for more details.
Useful links and documents
- Thriving at Work (1,021KB, PDF)
- Are you doing enough? (Health and Safety Executive) (69KB, PDF)
- Great Dream: Ten Keys to Happier Living (Action for Happiness) (13,729KB, PDF)
- Introduction to Mentally Healthy Workplaces (MIND) (541KB, PDF)