Wellbeing at St James
At St James, we encourage our children and families to talk to trusted adults in and out of school so help and support can be provided wherever needed. We think this is vital since mental health problems affect approximately 1 in 10 children and young people. Poor mental health is often a direct response to what is happening in the children’s lives and can include depression, anxiety and conduct disorders.
The wellbeing of our children is incredibly important to us. A child who is happy and healthy, physically, emotionally and mentally, is able to form and maintain better relationships with others, both in and out of school. They can better access and engage with learning, which in turn helps them to be "Ready for the Future".
Good mental health allows children and young people to develop the resilience they need to cope with whatever life throws at them and to grow into well-rounded, healthy adults.
Some things can help keep children mentally well include:
- being in good physical health, eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise and a good sleep routine
- having time and the freedom to play, indoors and outdoors
- being part of a family that gets on well most of the time
- taking part in local activities for young people.
Other important factors include:
- feeling loved, trusted, understood, valued and safe
- being interested in life and having opportunities to enjoy themselves
- being hopeful and optimistic
- being able to learn and having opportunities to succeed
- accepting who they are and recognizing what they are good at
- having a sense of belonging in their family, school and community
- feeling they have some control over their own life
- having the strength to cope when something is wrong (resilience) and the ability to solve problems.
Some children may need help with their wellbeing at times, this is different for every child and we provide a wide range of support for our children. Some children may need a 'check-in' on a regualr basis. An identified adult will 'check-in' with them on a regular basis. Some children may need help coming in to school, we ensure that a consistent adult is available to greet the child and walk into schol with them, talking to them, answering questions and providing reassurance as needed.
We also have Wellbeing groups, which are led by our trained Wellbeing Champions. These are adults in school who have completed training from Place2Be and Future In Mind. We have found that, since Covid-19, children have returned to school and those who need wellbeing support need it either for their anger or for their anxieties. As a result, Wellbeing Champions lead small group sessions on anger and anxiety. Some children may need more focused and personalised support for this, and they may receive weekly (or more frequent) 1:1 sessions with an adult. Sessions focus on idenitifying triggers to their emotions and strategies are shared with the children, giving them tools that they can use to help themselves when they feel their emotions are beginning to 'take over'.
Our ambassadors are on duty in the rainbow area of the playground where they have resources to support children who may be in need of a friendly hand or activity to help with worries, friendships or anything else they wish to share.
To further support children, we also have a school counsellor, who comes to school once a week to provide more specialist and personalised counselling to those children who need it. Specialist Mental Health advice can also be sought by contacting school who have access to a primary practitioner working for Future in Mind (part of CAMHS).
Who can help me?
Parents often ask us for strategies that they can use at home. Below, you will find websites and phone numbers that you can use if you would like more information, strategies or advice. You can always ask us in school too, and we will do our best to help.
24 Hour Mental Health Helpline - 0800 183 0558 (More information in the files at the bottom of this page)
Star Bereavement - firstname.lastname@example.org or contact: 01924 787384
Wakefield Early Help Directory - https://www.wakefield.gov.uk/schools-and-children/early-help?
WF- I Can Help - https://wf-i-can.co.uk/
CAMHS advice/Anxiety Advice - click here
Going back to school
Some children can find it difficult to come back into school after spending longer periods of time at home with family, for example, after the holidays.
Preparing your child for the first day back at school – Trauma Informed Schools
These websites may be useful if your child has experienced a trauma. Please inform school if your child has experienced trauma and we will support you and your child. The following websites also offer useful information.
Smiling Mind app: https://www.smilingmind.com.au/smiling-mind-app
EXTRA RESOURCES Youth Wellbeing Directory: https://www.annafreud.org/on-my-mind/youth-wellbeing/
https://wf-i-can.co.uk/ - Wellbeing website for adults and children
Young Minds - https://www.youngminds.org.uk/