The implications of wellbeing in the education sector
The Work Foundation’s report, published in August 2014, suggested that further research was required to discover whether the link between staff health and wellbeing and patient outcomes in the NHS are duplicated in teaching. Past research has found that there was statistically a very positive relationship between staff wellbeing and student outcomes but the causal relationship could not be determined because of methodological limitations. It goes without saying, however, that a teacher who is struggling with their own workload and work-life balance will find it challenging to help students who are experiencing the same issues in the lead up to exams, for example. So, as far as wellbeing and performance are concerned, teacher wellbeing is very relevant for student wellbeing and student wellbeing is considered vital to achieving increased educational attainment.
A recently appointed headteacher stated that “staff wellbeing is crucial in turning a school around” and, as has been shown time and time again in many other sectors, there is little doubt over the significant link between job satisfaction and performance.
Sadly, particularly in the current economic climate, investing in teachers’ professional development is often a low priority. According to figures from the Department of Education, one in four newly qualified teachers will leave within their first five years in the classroom. It has also been stated that no private sector organisation would be able to operate with the high attrition rates some education authorities have experienced in recent years.
Happily, however, many leaders in the profession feel that professional development is a worthwhile investment and not a negative cost and have witnessed first hand the difference it can make to the individual, their students and the educational community as a whole.
Such forward thinking establishments often ask In Equilibrium to run short workshops, a half or full day training course during an in-service training day (Inset day), or to speak at a conference.
We recently ran a Developing Personal Resilience workshop in such circumstances and received the following comment:
“Stimulating and very interesting. Trainer showed patience and understanding.”
A Developing Resilience in Managers course led to the following feedback:
“The course really gave me an insight into why I behave in a certain way and how I can choose to change this.”
Whilst a Practical Approaches to Handling Pressure course received this observation:
“I think the course should be mandatory for all college staff.”
The following are two of the many recommendations we have received from working with educational establishments:
“The group were so impressed with the course they have requested a follow-up in six months to measure how, as a group, they have addressed their plans and what they have achieved. I would recommend In Equilibrium to anyone who provides training for their staff, as their approach to training is extremely professional.”
University of Dundee
“The training was very well received by staff who now all intend to implement the session’s practical tips and techniques into their existing roles. A large proportion of the staff rated the facilitator and their delivery as excellent and their only recommendation was for a further and longer session!”
Leeds City College
If you would like to find out how In Equilibrium could work with you to help improve teachers’ or students’ wellbeing either by a short workshop, a training course, some one to one counselling or addressing a conference, please contact Alastair Taylor on 0131 476 5027, email [email protected] or via our website enquiry form.