St Francis De Sales Catholic Infant And Nursery School

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Mental Health and Wellbeing

At St Francis de Sales Catholic Infant and Nursery School, the mental health and wellbeing of our whole school community is central to our ethos. We follow our school mission statement by walking, learning, loving and smiling with Jesus – we model and encourage kindness to each other as staff and to our children. We want everyone to feel safe and happy and recognise the need to promote the Health and Well-Being of children, their parents / carers and our staff. We strongly believe that children who have a healthy mind as well as a healthy body, are enabled  to reach their full potential to become a lifelong learner.

The past few years have thrown more challenges than ever to our Mental Health. Teachers use Jigsaw for the teaching of the PSHE Curriculum, which has a huge focus on mental and physical health. Each of these lessons always begins with a mindfulness session to help us to check in with how we are feeling.

We use Zones of Regulation and model the use of ‘zones’ language to support children to identify how they are feeling, the zone that they are in and to co-regulate alongside them throughout the day.

Mental health is how we feel, how we think and how we behave. Mental Health Promotion for children and is everybody’s business. At St Francis de Sales Catholic Infant and Nursery School, we recognise that all children and adults need the foundation of positive mental health to benefit fully from all of the opportunities available to them.

It is about:

  • being able to form and maintain relationships with others
  • being adaptable to change and other people’s expectations
  • being able to have fun
  • being open to learning
  • being able to develop a sense of right and wrong
  • being able to develop the resilience to manage ordinary setbacks

All children and adults need to:

  • be able to Connect with others by participating in groups and teams
  • know they are Capable and able to achieve
  • know they Count in their world and can contribute to their community
  • know they have Courage and can manage risks appropriately


Everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable. At times, anyone may need additional support to maintain or develop good mental health.


The mental health of children and adults in school, parents and carers and the wider whole school community will impact on all areas of development, learning, achievement and experiences. All children have the right to be educated in an environment that supports and promotes positive mental health for everybody. All adults have the right to work in an environment that supports and promotes positive mental health for everybody.


St Francis de Sales Catholic Infant and Nursery School provides a learning environment that promotes and enhances positive mental health. A consistent approach means that the school environment and school ethos all promote the mental health of the whole school community. Healthy relationships underpin positive mental health and have a significant impact.


A mentally healthy environment has:

  • a clear and agreed ethos and culture that accords value and respect to all
  • a commitment to being responsive to children and young people’s needs
  • clearly defined mental health links in school policies
  • clear guidelines for internal and external referrals
  • inclusion and diversity promoted
  • open and honest conversations
  • strong links with external agencies to provide access to support and information
  • a named lead for mental health promotion with the expectation that there is support and involvement and an ethos that ‘mental health is everyone’s business’ – this is Miss Wish, our Learning Mentor

A mentally healthy environment is a place where children and young people:

  • have opportunities to participate in activities that encourage belonging
  • have opportunities to participate in decision-making
  • have opportunities to celebrate academic and non-academic achievements
  • have their unique talents and abilities identified and developed
  • have opportunities to develop a sense of worth through taking responsibility for themselves and others
  • have opportunities to reflect
  • have access to appropriate support that meets their needs
  • have a right to be in an environment that is safe, clean, attractive and well cared for
  • are surrounded by adults who model positive and
  • appropriate behaviours, interactions and ways of relating at all times


A mentally healthy environment is a place where staff:

  • have their individual needs recognised and responded to in a holistic way
  • have a range of strategies that support their mental health, e.g. a named person to speak to, signposting
  • have recognition of their work-life balance
  • have the mental health and well-being of the whole staff reviewed regularly
  • feel valued and have opportunities to contribute to decision-making processes
  • celebrate and recognise success
  • are able to carry out roles and responsibilities effectively
  • are provided with opportunities for CPD both personally and professionally
  • have their unique talents and skills recognised and opportunities are provided for development
  • have time to reflect
  • can access proactive strategies and systems to support them at times of emotional needs in both the short term and the long term


A mentally healthy environment is a place where parents/carers:

  • are recognised for their significant contribution to children and young people’s mental health
  • are welcomed, included and work in partnership with schools and agencies
  • are provided with opportunities where they can ask for help when needed
  • are signposted to appropriate agencies for support
  • are clear about their roles and expectations of their responsibilities in working in partnership with schools
  • opinions are sought and valued and responded to
  • strengths and difficulties are recognised, acknowledged and challenged appropriately


A mentally healthy environment is a place where the whole school community:

  • is involved in promoting positive mental health
  • is valued for the role it plays in promoting positive mental health
  • contributes towards the ethos of the school 


Here are some of the things we do at St Francis de Sales Catholic Infant and Nursery School to support children’s Mental Health and Wellbeing

 We provide opportunities that promote positive mental health, through the standard curriculum and extended provision:

  • Jigsaw PSHE curriculum from Nursery to Year 2
  • Therapeutic Play in our Thinc Room
  • Massage 
  • Seedlings
  • Forest School
  • Nurture Groups
  • Talking Partners
  • Circle Time
  • Early identification of needs through a graduated approach to teaching and learning
  • Adapted learning activities
  • Visual timetables
  • Effective Accessibility, Anti-bullying, Positive Behaviour Strategy, Equalities, SEND & Inclusion and Teaching & Learning Policies
  • Learning Mentor
  • Referrals to outside agencies: ADHD Foundation, SENISS. CAMHS, NSPCC, Bobby Colheran Trust
  • Additional Support


If your child does have difficulties with their mental health and wellbeing, then they may need support with:

  • Attendance
  • Attention and listening skills
  • Low self-esteem
  • Managing anger
  • Forming and maintaining relationships
  • Depression
  • Bereavement
  • Life outside school


Your child may benefit from:

  • Behaviour support
  • Health Care Plan
  • Playground support
  • Access to quiet areas
  • Family Support
  • Pastoral support and guidance from a key member of staff eg Learning Mentor
  • Lego Therapy 
  • Support from the School Nurse
  • School-based Play Therapy sessions
  • Support, advice & training from specialists