Well-being for school pupils needs to be addressed

stresskidsParents searching for school places for their children in England are used to scouring league tables for information as to what is a good school but a call has been made for these tables to include measures of well-being.

Because, says the BBC, while these might show huge amounts of detail about exam results, they will not reveal much about the levels of happiness among pupils.

Sir Anthony Seldon, a university head, former head teacher and mental health campaigner, says school league tables should include measures of well-being.

He says this could help to tackle an ‘epidemic of mental health’ problems prevalent among school-going children.

“As long as the only metric on which schools are being assessed is their exam performance, our schools will never have the incentive to take well-being as seriously as they should,” Seldon, vice chancellor of the University of Buckingham, told the BBC.

Seldon added that the Office for National Statistics regularly measures well-being and that it would be possible to make school-level comparisons. This could include comparing the resources put into pastoral care, such as staffing and support services, and surveying a sample of pupils to see their views on school life.

While exam league tables in England are due to be overhauled again to show how much academic progress is made by pupils, Seldon says parents want to know more about a school than its exam results.

“It is perfectly clear to me, as a head of schools for 20 years, that parents will pay more heed to the well-being tables than to the exam league tables. They know, even if the government doesn’t, that schools that prioritise well-being, which includes challenging and stretching students, also build character and help them to perform better than those schools which are just exam factories.”

Recent research showed that children in England are among the unhappiest in the world, behind countries such as Ethiopia, Algeria and Romania. The Children’s Society study, which looked at 15 diverse countries, ranked England 14th for life satisfaction of its young people, ahead of South Korea.

More than a third of English children said they had been bullied in school, and half had felt excluded, it found. The report showed there were higher levels of anxiety and unhappiness among teenage girls, compared with five years ago.

Coping with life’s pressures is hard for children as they go through physical and emotional changes and many find it hard to do so without medication.

However, clinical hypnotherapy can offer a non-invasive treatment for such worries which can lead to a better adjusted child able to cope easier with life’s pressures and school – even exams.

The National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) – which has the largest register of qualified hypnotherapists in the UK – says while it is natural to have some fears and anxious moments, anxiety is a fear or concern that is exaggerated, and is out of proportion to the situation, although sometimes it may not feel like this.

“It is an adrenaline response that causes your heart to beat faster, pumping oxygen around your body to those parts that need it to protect you. You may feel as if you are on high alert as well, unable to calm down or relax, your mind may race unable to focus or quieten down,” says the NCH.

Just a few sessions with a hypnotherapist can lead to a client feeling more confident and more relaxed in previously worrying situations. Many hypnotherapy clients often say they are calmer and that they have more clarity of thought – able to make decisions more easily. The are sleeping much better and as, a result, are able to work more effectively.

For peace of mind and to be free of anxiety and stress, contact an NCH therapist near you by clicking here and rest assured that your life will be better.