The school’s growth and achievement of its vision and mission is a collaborative work where the staff of the school plays a vital role. But for this, it is necessary for the school staff to be motivated, skilled, passionate and honest about their role in the school. Hence, nurturing the school staff’s well-being is important.
The staff members of the school are the ones who can create wonders and help students achieve success in their lives.
A school is divided into teaching and non-teaching staff, where the teaching staff is not only responsible for guiding students in academic and extracurricular activities but also for making students good human beings. The non-teaching staff looks after the administration, management, etc., which also adds value to the school.
Is the well being of school staff disturbed? If yes, why?
The survey, conducted on teachers and school staff in 2020 by the Education Support Organisation, has the following findings:
- 77% of school staff experienced symptoms of poor mental health due to their work
- 72% are stressed
- 46% always go to school when unwell
- 42% think their organisation’s culture has a negative impact on their wellbeing
- 54% have considered leaving the sector in the past two years due to pressure on their mental health
Because of the above reasons and many more, it has become very important to help school staff in nurturing their well-being.
Let’s discuss how we can use the main five different strategies to help school staff nurture well-being.
1. Survey to support staff wellness:
It is always good to understand the school staff and their personal and professional experiences before promoting well-being strategies so that the output can be fruitful for the school as well as for the staff.
Schools can do a survey through online and offline modes on topics like dreams and aspirations, workload, job satisfaction, school support required, student and parents’ engagement, and relationship with them. Post data collection, schools can analyse and work on insights to improve staff satisfaction which will lead to well-being.
2. Maintain a positive environment in school:
Looking at the various causes of disturbance in staff’s well-being mentioned above, it’s become necessary to prioritise wellbeing in the school. We have to set a school culture where staff feels positive about their work.
They should all be treated equally. We can do this by appreciating, encouraging, and guiding the teaching and non-teaching staff rather than ordering and controlling. This can also lead to an open space for creativity, hard work, honesty, and dedication towards schools and their stakeholders.
3. Empowering and upskilling:
As many of the school staff members struggle with handling school activities and new teaching techniques, one of the positive behaviour management techniques that support the health of the staff is by strengthening their abilities and confidence.
By receiving professional learning and training to improve the application of various pedagogies and techniques (Classroom behaviour management, Hybrid teaching techniques, Lesson planning, etc.), they would feel more confident and be able to provide better results.
School administrators should set up a forum for staff members to participate in decision-making so that they feel included and valued members of the school community. Additionally, schools must offer staff workers critical feedback or individualised comments that boost their spirits.
4. Reward outstanding work:
“What’s in it for me”, is an obvious thing that most of us think about while working in any sector. Bonus, rewards, and awards are some of the factors which motivate and encourage school staff members. It is payback for their extraordinary efforts, which are directly or indirectly helpful to the school.
5. Physical and mental wellbeing sessions:
School staff wellness has been affected a lot because of the prolonged school closure and that has put them through anxiety, fear of losing jobs, and depression. So it is important to promote well-being in schools.
Physical education, physical activities, and one-on-one sessions can be provided to improve physical health. Training on workload management, stress management, mental health sessions, and personality development sessions can be done to nurture wellness in schools.
In addition to the above behaviour strategies, we can think of providing additional benefits to maintain satisfaction among staff, like discounts or free education to school staff’s family children, free access to the school library, incentives on admissions, health cover, any sports or gym membership, etc. The benefits given to staff will nurture confidence, satisfaction, and mindfulness in him/her.
The success of students and the development of the school both depend heavily on the effectiveness of the school staff. Finding the precise support and assistance that the staff needs is essential to promoting wellbeing, and schools can use behaviour strategies by following the information to maximise staff productivity.