A Yorkshire Dales school is launching a new vision for supporting students with their health and wellbeing.
Wensleydale School & Sixth Form, in Leyburn, has had a difficult year. The school has had to make some tough decisions based on funding. In February the school building was closed off after a bomb scare and, most importantly, the community came together to say farewell to a student who took his own life.
Julia Polley, Headteacher, said: “We have faced our challenges over the last twelve months.
“We are a very strong community, we’re doing well academically and our finances are now stable. We cannot, however, shy away from the reality that we have had to deal with things that have shaped us. In fact, I think it is healthy that we recognise that.
“That is why we wanted to stop, reflect and spend some focused time considering initiatives that are about so much more than just grades and outcomes. We want to do more to support our students to be resilient, caring members of our community.”
As a result, Wensleydale School & Sixth Form will be introducing a range of new initiatives in the new academic year that have a strong focus on student health and wellbeing.
Mrs Polley added: “Our new Wellbeing Vision covers all aspects of a student’s life here at Wensleydale.
“Thanks to a grant, our students are working hard to develop a wellbeing garden so they have a place to pause and reflect. We are also proud that, from September, we will be a recognised centre to give students the opportunity to be part of the Combined Cadet Forces (CCF). Cadets will have the opportunity to learn new skills, engage in adventurous activities and benefit from being part of a more disciplined and focused structure. In addition, new caterers will be enhancing our healthy meal options.
“The Sixth Form centre is being redeveloped to help provide a greater balance between work and socialising spaces and our students have also led on the development of a No See, No Hear policy on mobile phones. We are refining and improving our Post- 16 Business Offer and have new staff in key positions. In conjunction with LWBN we are offering a unique Post- 16 offer for our community.
“They want to focus on socialising and supporting one another, not on the screens in front of them.”
“In short, we are leaving no stone unturned in making this not just a strong school academically, but also one where young people understand how to help and support themselves and others.”