In this episode Vijita Patel considers the strategic implementation of the Recovery Curriculum for her school, Swiss Cottage School, Development & Research Centre in London. She does this from a stance of compassionate leadership, with a clear focus on engagement in learning.
Her penetrating analysis shows how child need should inform organisational judgements, and that a constant focus should be the emotional well being of the child. A mutually respectful relationship with families as co educators, is vital at this time she says.
Never has compassion in our schools been so crucial than at this current time, where phased re opening of schools is high on the National agenda. It is critical to restoring the emotional well being of our children, teachers, teaching assistants, and school leaders.
This article gives a good overview, and deepens understanding of, what compassion is, and how it might contribute to restoring our schools as mentally healthy places.
How will it be for children when they return to school? It would be naive to think that they will pick up where they left off on the day their school went into lock down.
We have been analysing the loss children have suffered during this time, and the potential anxiety and trauma it may cause, with significant impact on their ability to learn effectively.
We have built the construct of a Recovery Curriculum, enabling schools to consider the processes they will need to put in place to successfully transition children back to school. As the word ‘construct’ suggests, this is a process of building, of co -constructing, a curriculum that is responsive to the needs of children, that harvests their experience and makes sense of it emotionally as well as cognitively.
In the coming weeks six school leaders will discuss their responses to the implications of a Recovery Curriculum in their school setting ( Primary, Secondary, and Special) In particular the pedagogy, resources and also the mental health of the children, will be considered. This podcast series will be available on: https://www.evidenceforlearning.net/recoverycurriculum
More details will be posted in the coming days.
We hope you find this thought provoking and insightful.
Stay well – stay strong.
Professor of Mental Health in Education,
Oxford Brookes University
Matthew Carpenter Principal, Baxter College, Kidderminster
Good Days and Bad Days During Lockdown:
A wordless booklet with scenes from existing Beyond Words stories looking at what makes a ‘good day’ and what makes a ‘bad day’. Scenes address social distancing, lockdown, mental health and daily routines.
When someone dies from coronavirus: a guide for families & carers:
An illustrated resource on how to respond when somebody dies from coronavirus. Aimed at family and carers.
Prepared by Prof. Sheila the Baroness Hollins & Prof. Irene Tuffrey-Wijne. These can be downloaded from the website: