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Mental Health & Wellbeing

What is Good Mental Health?

Looking after your mental health is not something we should just do if we are struggling, or feeling low, anxious or stressed. It’s actually something we should think about all the time and really invest in, just like with our physical health.

Having good mental health can help us sleep better, feel better, enable us to do the things we want to do, and help us have more positive relationships with those around us. We do not need to wait until we’re struggling. Looking after our mental health is not only good for us now, it can also help us deal with and manage difficult times in the future. Over time, it may also reduce our risk of physical health problems.

Our Ethos

At Rufford, we know that everyone experiences life challenges that make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that mental health and wellbeing is everybody’s business and that we all have a role to play in ensuring a positive culture for our whole school community where this can be shared and supported.

The Department for Education (DfE) recognises that: “In order to help their children succeed; schools have a role to play in supporting them to be resilient and mentally healthy”.

At Rufford, we understand that mental health and wellbeing can have an impact on academic performance, and so we strive to put in place and go above and beyond to support our children and their families.  

Our Pastoral Team work closely to support families and they deliver parent and child workshops about managing worry and supporting wellbeing.  One of the biggest differences we can make, is to give children the awareness and skills to look after and think about their own wellbeing.  This applies to the adults in their lives too.  

Our Curriculum 

Rufford’s curriculum, encompasses mental health and wellbeing.  This supports children in developing the knowledge and skills to enable them to make informed decisions about their wellbeing, health and relationships.  Children learn about their mental health in their PHSE lessons each and we take time to think about how we can secure our wellbeing during Children's Mental Health Week in February.  We also work with Mental Health Support Teams who will deliver lessons about how to manage worry, friendship issues and encourage wellbeing.  In these different ways, our children will learn to understand their thoughts, emotions and how they are able to relate to the world in different ways.

Our Wellbeing Champions

Each class from Year 1 to Year 6, votes for a child to represent them as a Wellbeing Champion.  These children know that their role is to support other children, to listen to their class and to be the representative for their class in their meetings.  These children work with staff to make decisions in school.  This year, they are working on a 'Child-friendly Anti-bullying Policy' that they can share with the whole school.  

Mental Health Support Teams

We work with the Black Country Mental Health Support Team to support our children and families.    Together, we deliver lessons to whole classes, including work about the five ways to wellbeing:

Five ways to wellbeing

CONNECT - connecting with others.

GIVE - giving (looking outward as well as inward).

BE ACTIVE - doing something active.

TAKE NOTICE - taking notice of the world around you.

KEEP LEARNING - learning new things.

Each action can be undertaken individually or collectively as part of everyday activity.


Mental Health Support workers will also complete targeted work with small groups of children and we can refer children who may need more specialist support so that they can receive 1:1 work with a Specialist Mental Health Practitioner. 

We aim to make our school a place for children and young people to experience a nurturing and supportive environment that has the potential to develop self-esteem and give positive experiences for overcoming adversity and building resilience.  Our pastoral and wellbeing teams also work closely with children and their families to offer personalised, targeted support, signposting to appropriate external agencies.

If you would like to talk to us about our approach to mental health and wellbeing, or if you think your child may need support, please just get in touch by phone 01384 686717 or by email:  

The key is that the children will start to use what they have been taught independently as a way of dealing with their own emotions.  Components include:

  • Mindfulness and meditation (e.g. zen zones, breathing, visualisation, calm, quiet time, thinking time)

  • Growth mindset and resilience (e.g. responding to ‘failure’ as a learning opportunity, bouncing back)

  • Managing negative thoughts (e.g. coping with worries, what to do when we are upset, strategies to calm down, zones of regulation)

We also use areas within our school grounds to maximise the space for teaching mindfulness and wellbeing.  We believe that exercise and outdoor education can support children with their wellbeing.

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