There are now 2332 schools currently involved in Kidsmatter across Australia. St Cecilia’s Catholic School joined this great initiative in 2013.
Schools have a significant influence on students’ emotional, social and behavioural development. There is a growing understanding that primary school years represent a significant opportunity for mental health promotion, and the prevention and early intervention or mental health problems in children. Students who are mentally healthy learn better, have better relationships with teachers, family members and peers, and exhibit greater resiliency in meeting life’s challenges.
Kidsmatter aims to strengthen those factors that protect students from developing mental health problems. To improve the mental health and wellbeing of students, Kidsmatter schools focus on four key components . These are:
A Positive School Community
Identifying how we can enhance our school climate to support student mental health and wellbeing, giving particular emphasis to ensuring that students, staff and parents feel ‘connected’ to each other and the broader school community.
Social and Emotional Learning for Students
Students receive social and emotional curriculum using evidence based programs to improve their self-awareness, social awareness, self-management, relationship skills and their capacity for responsible decision-making.
Working with Parents and Carers
This component is about schools and families working together to support children. This is done through building collaborative working relationships with parents and carers, and establishing parent and carer support networks.
Helping Children with Mental Health Difficulties
School staff and parents receive information on strategies to support and assist children at risk of or experiencing mental health problems. This includes information on detecting signs of mental health difficulties in young children, information on local service providers and how to access evidence-based programs and interventions.
St Cecilia’s works collaboratively with students, parents and staff to develop and strengthen each component area to further improve the mental growth of the children at our school.