Student health and wellbeing are critical areas for policy development and action between the Australian and State government and the education sectors. Significant policy and program development is occurring in the areas of:
- changing youth attitudes to binge drinking
- sun safety
Programs and Resources
National and state initiatives, activities and programs developed in of student health and wellbeing include:
- The Queensland Ed-LinQ is a cross sector program that supports teachers and school staff to identify, and access support for, students with emotional and behavioural disturbance or who are showing signs of an emerging mental illness. The Queensland Ed-LinQ initiatives aims to improve communication, coordination and collaboration between the education sector, the primary care sector, and the mental health sector, with the aim of improving the social and emotional outcomes of students.
- MindMatters is a resource and professional development program supporting Australian secondary schools in promoting and protecting the health, social and emotional wellbeing of all the members of school communities.
- KidsMatter aims to improve the mental health and wellbeing of children, reduce mental health problems and achieve greater support for children experiencing mental health difficulties and their families.
- National Safe Schools Program
- The National Safe Schools Framework (NSSF) developed by the Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs. The aim of the NSSF is to assist school communities in building safe and supportive schools where bullying, harassment and violence are minimised and students receive support on issues related to child abuse and neglect.
- National School Chaplaincy Program
- The National School Chaplaincy Program (NSCP) aims to support school communities that wish to access the services of a school chaplain or secular pastoral care worker. It is a voluntary program to assist school communities in supporting the wellbeing of their students, including strengthening values, providing greater pastoral care and enhancing engagement with the broader community.
- Queensland Schools Alliance Against Violence
- There are many resources available to support schools in providing effective strategies promote positive relationships and reduce bullying and violence in schools. Schools should be selective to ensure suitability to each individual school context.
Useful Resources to Support Schools
- Alannah and Madeline Foundation is a national charity protecting children from violence and its effects
- BOUNCE BACK! is a classroom resiliency program that provides practical classroom strategies to help young people cope with sadness, difficulties, frustrations and hard time
- FRIENDS for Life is a program to prevent anxiety and depression and build resilience aimed at children aged 8-11 years
- Friendly Schools and Families Program is a program to assist with the design, development, implementation and evaluation of a social skill building and anti-bullying program
- National Centre Against Bullying is a peak body advising and informing the Australian Community on the issue of childhood bullying and the creation of safe schools, including the issue of cyber safety
- Rock and Water Program aims to help young people interact and communicate more confidently with others. It makes use of physical exercises that are linked to the acquisition of mental and physical skills
- You Can Do It! is a program to help students set achievable goals and have positive thoughts. The program covers eight areas: confidence, effort and persistence, happenings, self-acceptance, goal setting, time management and organisation, making friends, and handling conflict
- Queensland Department of Education and Training
- Vodcasts and Support Materials by Dr Ken Rigby
Social Emotional Learning
Social–emotional learning (SEL) is the umbrella term for the many different kinds of prevention programs that focus on a wide range of behaviours in school including externalizing behaviours, internalizing behaviours, empathy, social problem solving, caring for others, positive coping skills, and perspective taking, to name a few.
The Catholic Church’s social doctrine, in fact, develops from the principle that affirms the inviolable dignity of the human person. At the very heart of the Gospel is life in community and engagement with others. The Catholic school, therefore endeavours to provide:
- a wealth of opportunities that are offered to young people for them to grow and develop their abilities and talents;
- a balanced focus on cognitive, affective, social, professional, ethical and spiritual aspects;
- encouragement for every pupil to develop their talents, in a climate of cooperation and solidarity.
Coping With Trauma Resources
A number of resources have been developed to assist school communities deal with the trauma of a natural disaster.
How And When To Get Help
Childhood Trauma Reactions: Preschool Aged Children
Childhood Trauma Reactions: Primary School Students
Childhood Trauma Reactions: Early Teens & Adolescents
Psychological First Aid: Australian Red Cross
The EQ website also has a collection of resources and vodcasts available here.