Mental Health & Wellbeing
We believe that paying more attention to the present moment – to your own thoughts and feelings, and to the world around you can improve your mental wellbeing. This awareness is known as "mindfulness". Mindfulness can help us to enjoy life more and understand ourselves better. It is proven to improve a child's ability to focus and can be a great help in times of stress when used as a way to calm down.
We believe well-being is all about our holistic health including physical and emotional.
At Chidham Parochial Primary School, we are committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of our pupils and staff to ensure that the school is a community where everyone feels able to thrive. Positive mental wellbeing is essential if children and young people are to flourish and lead fulfilling lives.
At our school, we know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that positive mental health is everybody’s business and that we all have a role to play.
Over 50% of mental illnesses start before the age of 14 and 1 in 10 children and young people has a mental health disorder (Public Mental Health, 2014). Recent survey results found that 12.5% (one in eight) of 5 to 19 year olds, surveyed in England in 2017, had a mental disorder (NHS, 2017).
“Mental health is a state of well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community,” (World Health Organization, 2014).
Two key elements to support good mental health are:
· Feeling Good – experiencing positive emotions like happiness, contentment and enjoyment. Including feelings like curiosity, engagement and safety.
· Functioning Well – how a person is able to function in the world, this includes positive relationships and social connections, as well as feeling in control of your life and having a sense of purpose.
Our role in school is to ensure that children are able to manage times of change and stress, and that they are supported to reach their potential or access help when they need it. Children are taught when to seek help, what help is available, and the likely outcome of seeking support so that they have the confidence and knowledge for themselves or others. We also have a role to ensure that children learn about what they can do to maintain positive mental health, what affects their mental health and
how they can help reduce the stigma surrounding mental health issues. As part of our targeted provision, we have and continue to access, outside help and support for pupils when required.
At Chidham Parochial Primary School, we believe that teaching about mental health and emotional wellbeing is important. The concepts covered in RSHE include keeping safe and managing risk, identity, equality, managing feelings and emotions, relationships, change, resilience and being healthy, which includes physical, mental, emotional and social well-being. We aim to promote pupils’ wellbeing through an understanding of their own and others’ emotions and the development of healthy coping strategies. Good mental health and wellbeing is just as important as good physical health. Like physical health, mental health can range across a spectrum from healthy to unwell; it can fluctuate on a daily basis and change over time. Children at Chidham Parochial Primary School have two lessons of PE each week. A wide range of sport-related school clubs are run by teachers and external coaches, whilst many of our pupils take part in inter-school sporting competitions which include an extensive range of sports and activities. Our proficient young leaders are excellent at organising activities and games during play times to encourage higher levels of physical activity and promote inclusion.
Levels of support
Universal Support– To meet the needs of all our pupils through our overall ethos, school values and our wider curriculum. For instance, developing resilience for all.
Additional support– For those who may have short term needs and those who may have been made vulnerable by life experiences such as separation or bereavement.
Targeted support– For pupils who need more differentiated support and resources or specific targeted interventions such referral to wider professionals.
Useful links: Dealing with anxiety: https://tutorful.co.uk/guides/the-expert-guide-to-help-your-child-with-anxiety
Young minds parents’ survival guide: https://www.youngminds.org.uk/parent/parents-guide-to-looking-after-yourself/
Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families: https://www.annafreud.org/parents/
Medicines and illness
The school needs to be fully informed of medical conditions that might affect a child in school, notably diabetes, asthma and allergies. We adhere to the guidance on administration of medicines in school issued by the Department for Education. Please read our Managing Medicines Policy.
School Health Service
Standard tests for hearing and vision along with checks for height and weight are carried out for Reception (generally during the term they turn 5 years of age)
In Year 6 there is a height and weight check.
Incidents of head lice occur from time to time. We encourage everyone to regularly check their children’s hair for any sign of head lice. (This can be achieved by regularly combing through the hair, which has conditioner on, with a nit comb.) If a member of your family is found to have head lice, please let the school know so that we can inform other families and ask them to check their family’s hair.
We adhere to a healthy eating policy; this means that only fruit or vegetables will be acceptable as a snack at break time. The children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 enjoy a daily fruit and water time; a piece of fruit or vegetable is provided each day through the national fruit and vegetable scheme.
We raise children’s awareness of the effect of consuming foods that contain a high level of sugar, fat, colouring and additives through various curriculum linked activities.
We cater for a number of children who are sensitive to certain foods and have an inclusive policy throughout the school. Our school hot meals are provided by Chartwells. Please click here to find out more, including their latest menu.
Please read our Food Policy
We recognise that it is important for children to drink adequate amounts of fluid during the school day. We have four drinking fountains installed outside and a filtered water cooler inside. Children are encouraged to drink at appropriate times during the school day and especially at playtimes. We encourage everyone to have a clearly named drinking water bottle that can be washed and refilled each day.
It is the responsibility of each child or their parent to check that these are regularly washed and kept clean. These bottles should only contain water and not squash.