The Cumberland

Building resilience and promoting wellbeing through whole school system change

Part of The Cumberland School’s success in the HeadStart programme is due to the commitment of the school’s Head Teacher and Senior Leadership Team. Being open to exploring how HeadStart can support a whole school Resilience and Wellbeing Strategy has led to a very productive relationship between HeadStart and staff across the school.

The school implemented a range of HeadStart interventions. One of those being the More than Mentors programme. Mentees in the group at Cumberland each had their own unique challenges ranging from lacking confidence to difficulty managing their behaviour. Week on week, the Mentors were consistently motivated to support their Mentees to create real and sustained change.

“Every time I need help with my behaviour my mentor is there for me. She inspires me to have a better future.” -HeadStart Mentee

“The progress you see from the start of programme to the end is massive. The experience with my mentee has been amazing.” -HeadStart Mentor

A highlight in Year 1 was the introduction of HeadStart co-production workshops. These workshops gave pastoral staff an opportunity to work alongside pupils from all year groups to produce resources that promote wellbeing in their school. This paved the way for the school to begin addressing issues raised by pupils and to build supportive relationships between staff and pupils.

In such a large school, HeadStart co-production workshops go a long way to help pupils feel that their voice is being heard and that their school is working hard to support their wellbeing and build their resilience.

“HeadStart makes you feel you make a difference. Kids our age don’t get a say in what we want. We get told what to do. It makes you feel more heard, they always ask for your opinions.” -HeadStart Pupil

Importantly for HeadStart, The Cumberland School’s commitment to the programme will continue to play a key role in helping to shape and develop resources and interventions which are relevant and effective in how schools support staff and pupils to develop their whole school resilience and wellbeing strategy.

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