Whilst appointing a governor to the wellbeing role is currently optional, they can make a big difference championing wellbeing for their whole school, linking with teaching staff, support staff, pupils and parents.
The wellbeing governor role
The reason for implementing the role at Millbrook was two-fold: the board wants to support the pupils to improve their wellbeing, but also to support the staff to look after their own wellbeing too.
The role has been developed to increase the profile of wellbeing in school, keeping wellbeing on the governor’s agenda and at the centre of school development. One of the main aims of the role is to support and ensure the wellbeing of the senior leadership team, as this has a positive knock-on effect throughout the school.
Wellbeing practices implemented at Millbrook
- End of term thank you – At the end of each term there is a whole school thank you celebration thanking children and staff for their hard work that term.
- Development of a Wellbeing Policy
- Putting wellbeing at the heart of their recruitment offer
- Year 5 Headstart programme – an afterschool club funded by the school that teaches children how to look after their wellbeing.
- Jigsaw PHSE programme – taught on Monday mornings, these sessions help children who struggle with difficulties over the weekend, to help them settle into the school routine.
Since the role came into effect, there have been beneficial outcomes for the whole school, including increased physical activity opportunities for pupils before and after school, a relook at maximising the use of outdoor spaces for the early years, and the implementation of a food policy alongside a water only policy throughout school.
Ann – Millbrook’s wellbeing governor, says:
“Our SLT are brilliant at supporting staff’s wellbeing creating a work life balance, regular staff wellbeing survey to always improve the support and support staff with both work and home life wellbeing but we were concerned about the wellbeing of the SLT which is where the decision to appointment a Wellbeing Governor came from. Millbrook is a really good school for supporting their teachers and support staff. The senior leadership team are supporting the teaching staff and the Wellbeing Governor and governing board are supporting the SLT.”
When asked what they would say to other schools who currently don’t have a wellbeing governor Ann said: “With what’s happening across the board with the children, it’s got to happen, but staff do often get left behind and they don’t have that voice but if you’ve got a governing board that’s for wellbeing of staff and pupils, you give the staff and pupils that voice. I know it’s not statutory but it should be.”
Deputy Headteacher Joanne Edwards added, “it shows people that someone cares about your wellbeing at the school. It’s where people fall down and why we have people leaving the profession all the time.”
Every school can benefit from a wellbeing governor who champions wellbeing for their school community, if you would like support please contact us by email or find out more about the wellbeing governor role on the Governors for Schools website.