Adapted from an article featured in inAlliance by Korowa’s Deputy Principal, Liana Gooch.

It is remarkable to consider the high degree of resilience, flexibility and energy drawn upon by students, staff and our wider Korowa community to deal with the challenges of a COVID-19 world. Even before the advent of this pandemic, the development of a Mental Health Strategy was already on Korowa’s agenda.

The metaphor of a growing tree represents our strategy’s key elements in the form of a framework designed specifically for Korowa.  The tree roots ground us and acknowledge our core values which inform our decision making, our commitment to embedding SEL into all we do to foster social, emotional, and cognitive development as we develop people of good character. With an emphasis upon positive growth, the branches and leaves constitute evidence based coping strategies to be implemented in order to enhance wellbeing through self-care practices, positive health practices, and meaningful community connections.

Through the internal expertise of our wellbeing team, staff have continued to unpack the categories of coping strategies into practical actions that can be delivered through different vehicles which include classroom activities, our Circle/Community/Crew classes, co-curricular activities and assemblies. Students in Year 6 have taken up the role of ‘Support Sisters’, and our Year 7 and 8s are working with I am Mindful kits.

Our Pop-Up Parenting Program provides a unique level of access to our School community and beyond to outstanding experts. Topics have included understanding how to support your child during the ongoing pandemic, promoting positive body image and dealing with anxiety.

We envisage that as we implement the Mental Health Strategy and collect and track associated data, it will continue to evolve in its delivery as will the design of the wellbeing dashboard to suit the future needs of our students.

Read more about Korowa’s Mental Health Strategy in this month’s issue of inAlliance from Alliance of Girls’ Schools Australasia, page 44.