Student mental health is a topic previously surrounded by stigma but recently it has become more of a priority in schools. This change is extremely positive and we should all be doing our best to support this.
At St. Bart’s we raised the profile of this topic during Mental Health Awareness week in May and have some ongoing projects to contribute towards student mental health.
An example of this is our Positivitree, a tree in the Nature Reserve at school, surrounded by a bench where students can come to sit when talking through concerns with staff. The bench is on the patio that was laid by students in the Sixth Form earlier this year.
Additionally, students in the Sixth Form can use this place for quiet reflection and peaceful meditation, or simply somewhere you can go to be removed from the bustle of school life.
Surrounding yourself with nature is proven to be calming and to positively affect your state of mind so we feel this is the perfect spot for Sixth Form students to retreat to when they feel overwhelmed. During the current exam season, with exams becoming more pressurised than ever, we hope the space will prove particularly useful for students who need a break from this exam stress.