All Smiles with National Mental Health and Wellbeing Award Win

The Thorpe Hall School community is celebrating winning a national award for its exemplary work to support pupils’ mental health and wellbeing. The Excellence and Innovation in Mental Health and Wellbeing award, from the Independent School’s Association (ISA), recognises Thorpe Hall’s commitment to addressing and preventing mental health issues in children.

Central to Thorpe Hall’s multi-pronged approach is a focus on teaching pupils from an early age about the causes and symptoms of poor mental health and how to promote resilience and wellbeing. All children, from Reception to Year 11, have access to support from the school’s full-time counsellor, and every member of staff receives ongoing mental health training, to ensure they are equipped to spot the signs quickly and respond appropriately.

A broad and collaborative framework of strategies, initiatives and resources is established throughout the school to help pupils manage stress and anxiety, resolve friendship issues and develop healthy relationships. Recognising that mind and body play equally important roles, pupils are also encouraged to choose an active lifestyle, eat well and adopt healthy sleep routines. From small group activities like mindfulness and Yoga to large-scale drama productions exploring topics like depression and abusive relationships, the issue of mental health and wellbeing is a priority for all at Thorpe Hall. With emotional wellbeing such a clear indicator of academic achievement and success in later life, the overarching aim is that the pattern is then set for how a young person will go on to manage their own mental health and wellbeing into adulthood.

Commenting on the School’s achievements, Andrew Hampton said: “This award recognises the contribution of every single staff member to this extremely important aspect of school life. Whether through leading on specific and highly effective programmes and projects or simply through the mindful, caring and respectful conduct which is embedded in everything they do, I have long seen the incredible impact our staff make to our pupils’ wellbeing and am delighted to now see these efforts recognised so prestigiously. School years are crucial in developing life-long good mental health and positive life outcomes, and we will continue to move forward with mental health and wellbeing at the heart of what we do here at Thorpe Hall School”.

Claire Osborn, ISA Chair, Emily Konstantos, CEO of The Safeguarding Alliance, and guest speaker Olympic Athlete Derek Redmond presented the award at the ISA’s Autumn Conference to Thorpe Hall’s Headteacher Andrew Hampton, Deputy Heads Jane Banks and Richard Turner and the School’s Counselling and Wellbeing Co-Ordinator Rebecca Barlow.