Pupil referral unit recognised for pupils' wellbeing focus

7th October 2021 | News | Thrive Ambassador Schools

A North Somerset school has been named as a Thrive Ambassador School for the role it plays in supporting the wellbeing of its pupils in order to support their social and emotional development

Voyage Learning Campus, which is based across two sites in Weston-super-Mare, is a pupil referral unit that offers alternative educational provision for young people aged 5 to 16 who are unable to attend mainstream school due to either health reasons or because they have been permanently excluded.

The setting has been named as an Ambassador School with Excellence in four areas - Environment, Leadership, Reparative and Right-time - after going through a rigorous assessment process with Thrive®, an organisation that trains teachers and other education professionals to support the emotional and social development of all children.

  • The Environment award recognises extraordinary schools which are making a positive impact on their pupils and on the wider community by having a focus on emotional wellbeing and creating an environment in which children are encouraged to thrive.
  • The Right-time award recognises schools which have succeeded in helping all pupils to understand their emotions and the role they play in positive mental health.
  • The Leadership award recognises remarkable schools where senior management and governors have prioritised mental wellbeing. They recognise that good mental health is the foundation for successful learning and life skills such as resilience that will equip children, staff and the wider community with the ability to cope with life's ups and downs.
  • The Reparative award recognises schools that have excelled in helping children who have gaps in their social and emotional development and have successfully met their needs.

"We have a really diverse group of pupils who are all vulnerable young people and the Thrive Approach® helps us to plug the developmental gaps they have so they can regulate their emotions and feel calmer and happier. One of our aims is to be a centre of excellence for children who have experienced difficulties or trauma and Thrive gives us the tool kit and strategies to be able to do that. I'm delighted that the hard work of everyone in the team, as well as our parents and pupils, has paid off and been recognised in this way," said Principal Emma Gundry, pictured above right.

The Thrive Ambassador Schools scheme has been launched as a way of acknowledging excellence in member schools. There are five areas in which schools can evidence how they use Thrive to support children's social and emotional development: Environment, Leadership, Right-time, Reparative and Relationship, with a special Ambassador School of Excellence Award only being attributed when the highest standard across all five categories is achieved.

As well as submitting an in-depth application form, Thrive staff met with the school, in line with coronavirus restrictions, to assess the way that teachers and other staff implement the Thrive Approach® to help build the emotional resilience of pupils, so that they can better manage the ups and downs of life and be more open to learning.

"Voyage Learning Campus is a special place where staff and pupils have worked hard together to create a positive and nurturing learning experience. It's an inspiring school that works pro-actively with mainstream schools and it richly deserves to be seen as an exemplar of good practice," said Rose Webb, Thrive Relationship Manager for the South West.

Over to you

Are you leading the way in developing happy, emotionally-resilient children or young people? Are you feeling the impact of embedding the Thrive Approach throughout your setting? You too may be eligible for Thrive Ambassador School status. Click here to find out how to apply.

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