Supporting Students and Staff Wellbeing
Schools shall develop a staff and student wellbeing plan in conjunction with school counselors.
Staff and students may at some point experience effects related to confinement, social isolation, and loss and bereavement amongst other forms of adversity. Schools are recommended to develop or provide age- and context-appropriate resources and references to support the whole school community in coping with mental health issues.
Schools are highly encouraged to implement interventions focused on tackling the mental and physical health of all staff.
Schools shall respect existing teacher workloads and professional development requirements of staff as outlined in Teacher Workload and Professional Development).
Counselors and wellbeing support staff should have appropriate knowledge of how to communicate with Students of Determination and demonstrate an understanding of their unique circumstances. Students of Determination may be more emotionally vulnerable as a result of the COVID-19 situation, and this may impact negatively upon their emotional health and wellbeing.
Where counselors do not have the appropriate training and expertise to support and communicate with Students of Determination, professional training and advice should be sought from staff members familiar with the needs of the student whilst ensuring their right to privacy. If this support cannot be found within the school due to issues of privacy, counselors should seek advice from other professionals whilst maintaining the student’s confidentiality.