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Supporting Teacher and Staff Wellbeing

While teaching can be incredibly rewarding, it’s not without its challenges. Funding cuts, looming inspections, ambitious targets and pandemic-imposed issues–which are still lingering–are placing school staff under significant pressure. Teachers are stretched in terms of time, money, resources and support – and in many cases, their mental wellbeing is suffering as a result. According to the Teacher Wellbeing Index 2022, 78% of those surveyed revealed that they had experienced symptoms of poor mental health due to their work. 

The Index also revealed that 48% of all staff were not confident in disclosing unmanageable stress or mental health issues to employers. It highlighted that these statistics suggests a troubling ‘perfect storm’ where school staff are facing pressures that are impacting their mental wellbeing but are not feeling equipped or comfortable to speak up. 

Experiencing poor mental wellbeing–whether exacerbated by workplace challenges or not–can impact staff motivation and performance. Poor mental health can prevent staff from carrying out duties to the best of their abilities, and from giving their pupils the time and focus that their education requires. Schools have a duty of care towards their employees which includes taking measures to safeguard and support staff’s mental and physical health. Ahead of Mental Health Awareness Week (15th to 21st May)–which this year is focused on the impact of stress and anxiety–take some time to reflect on how you can create an environment which supports your staff’s mental health.  

Spotting signs of mental health difficulties amongst staff

Despite having a supportive workplace environment, staff may still feel unable to come forward if their mental health is suffering. Just as teaching staff are often the first to notice if a child is struggling, the same is true when it comes to monitoring the wellbeing of employees and can be vital for both staff and students.  

Observing colleague behaviours and actions can often reveal if someone’s welfare is suffering. These signs are very similar to those you may observe in students facing mental health challenges. 

Staff experiencing mental health challenges, may: 

  • Appear quieter, withdrawn or less sociable than usual 
  • Bury themselves in work, or equally, seemingly avoid work responsibilities 
  • Express irritability, anger, frustration or sadness for no obvious reason 
  • Display low self-esteem or loss of confidence 
  • Seem very tired during the working day 
  • Vocalise that workloads feel unmanageable 
  • Experience changes to their usual routines or habits, including appetite, sleep, hobbies or exercise. 

Using CPOMS to better support staff wellbeing  

Safeguarding software like CPOMS StaffSafe provides a valuable way of managing concerns around staff wellbeing as it helps you to log instances in a confidential and easily accessible way which can help you to build a fuller understanding of your teams’ wellbeing on a day-to-day basis. 

CPOMS StaffSafe allows you to capture welfare information on your teams, helping to build staff chronologies that can provide insight into their wellbeing. This confidential data can help you to identify trends or patterns of behaviour, which may indicate when staff require additional support from management and peers. Consistent monitoring can help you to avoid missing worrying signs and ensure the best outcomes are put in place for staff. 

To find out more about how CPOMS StaffSafe can help you better support the wellbeing of staff, speak to a member of our team. 

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