Happy World Mental Health Day….with a special mention for teachers!
Teachers have it really easy, right? 13 weeks holiday a year and a day that finishes at 3pm, sounds idyllic doesn’t it? So why has it repeatedly been documented in recent studies that teachers are amongst the most stressed workers within the UK? Perhaps it’s the fact that they have 30 little human beings in their sole charge for many hours per day. Each of those little humans will have their own challenges, some minor and some major, which the teacher needs to be aware of and hold in their awareness as they consider how to fill their young minds with knowledge and inspiration. One child may have recently suffered a bereavement, another may have autism, another maybe being bullied, and what about the bully? What have they experienced that has led to bullying other children? Three children may have colds, two may not have had breakfast that morning, or dinner the night before. What about the child who repeatedly shows up with dirty clothes or the one who falls asleep most afternoons? Then of course there are the league tables to think about, the constant pressure of having to make sure that the academic results increase despite differences in the cohort. Anyone who knows a teacher will know the horror of an Ofsted inspection.
The problem is spiralling as more and more teachers leave the profession within 5 years, this creates higher levels stress as schools fight to keep up standards with fewer, more stressed staff. The pressured environment not only affects the teachers but of course it also affects the children too, who are also under increased pressure to tick academic attainment boxes, whilst the focus away from the ‘whole child’ decreases with time and cost limits.
We believe passionately that this it is time to change this. Our mission is to empower and enable teachers to reconnect with the reason and purpose for going into teaching in the first place. We work with schools to create positive educational environments where staff and children thrive. It’s amazing what happy teachers and happy children can achieve!
If teachers and schools are interested in what we do and would like to have a taster experience our strengths based coaching, then we our hosting an Introduction to Positive Psychology Coaching at our flagship school in Colchester. Willow Brook Primary have been using our approach for 5 years and have achieved a 79% reduction in stress related absence.
If you don’t work in education, how about you take a moment to share a smile, a kind word or a ‘thank-you’ with someone who does?