A number of Rydal Penrhos staff completed Mental Health First Aid training recently.
One of many concerns that emerged from the educational lockdowns over the last 12 months is the importance of mental health and wellbeing. We have as a school at Rydal Penrhos been so aware of this both while supporting online learning and then, the return to a school environment after so long away and any apprehension this may incur.
Staff have always been on hand to lend support and guidance to both Prep and Senior pupils, in addition to providing social activities with classmates to keep some semblance of normality, albeit in a virtual format.
With the return of all year groups back on-site Mrs Alison Hind, Head of Pastoral Care at Rydal Penrhos arranged for Sarah Seenan (ALN/SEND), Paul Sanders ( Head of Key Stage 4), Sarah Bollan (Head of Key Stage 3), Mary Richardson (PSHE) and Sarah James (Pupil Liason) to train to become Mental Health First Aiders via a special online course designated to the important topic.
Mrs Hind, said: “The safety and wellbeing of our pupils is our highest priority, and I have nothing but admiration for the dedicated support and care shown by our teachers and teaching support staff.
“Particularly the Form Tutors and Heads of Key Stage across the school, who have been the lynchpin to ensuring that targeted support has been provided to those children and families requiring it over the past months.
“This support is ongoing and alongside professional development in online learning, many staff members have been undertaking further training in mental health and wellbeing to assist us in our endeavours to promote and support our pupils during their transition back into face-to-face learning.”
Among the topics covered during the Mental Health First Aid course for staff included:
- Mental Health in Young People
- Depression in Young People
- Anxiety Problems in Young People
- Eating Disorders in Young People
- Psychosis in Young People
- Substance Use Problems in Young People
In addition to this, the University of Chester offered online training courses surrounding a similar theme, which many Rydal Penrhos staff attended virtually.
These courses were a valuable part of helping Rydal Penrhos further support pupils who have found online learning and lockdown challenging.
Mrs Seenan (ALN/ SEND), added: “I truly believe that the mental well-being of our pupils is our priority in order to support successful learning.
“These have been such challenging times for everyone and our students in exam years, in particular, have found the uncertainty particularly distressing. The pastoral team having the Mental Health First Aid training is another valuable tool.”
Pupils and their families deserve all the credit in the world for their application throughout the school’s thorough online learning provision during the last year. This has enabled each pupil’s goals to remain unaltered despite the disruption surrounding their day-to-day routine and staff will be and have been there every step of the way for them.
Anyone wishing to enquire about Rydal Penrhos School can do so by calling 01492 530155, email email@example.com or register your interest online here: https://rydalpenrhos.com/admissions/apply-now.