Specialist school is first in Yorkshire to receive award for mental health focus

7th February 2022| News

A North Yorkshire specialist educational setting, which prides itself on providing a family atmosphere for learners, has been recognised as the first Thrive Ambassador School in Yorkshire for the role it plays in supporting the mental wellbeing of young people.

The Hub, in Catterick, specialises in supporting children and teenagers with social emotional and mental health (SEMH) needs. It also caters for pupils with special educational needs and disability (SEND). It has 10 pupils aged from 10 to 16 that teachers work with on a one-to-one basis to support their emotional wellbeing and learning goals.

The Hub has been named as an Ambassador School with Excellence in the Environment after going through a rigorous assessment process with Thrive®, which trains teachers and other education professionals to support the emotional and social development of children and young people. The award recognises extraordinary schools which are making a positive impact on their pupils and on the wider community by having a focus on emotional health and creating an environment in which children’s wellbeing thrives.

“Thrive is something that is embedded throughout the school – in every room and throughout the day - so we were really excited to be recognised for the work we do. We know that we are changing lives and doing something pretty magical here but the outside world doesn’t know that. When children come to us they may be really struggling, but even the pupils who only spend a short time here make huge progress – more than they would do in a mainstream setting,” said The Hub Director Becca Morgan.

Children, known as ‘Hubsters’, are greeted individually by their teacher at the start of the school day and then they sit down, with staff, for breakfast together before starting lessons. Each child has their own learning space that they can retreat to if they are feeling overwhelmed and there are plenty of sensory features in every room aimed at creating a quiet and calming atmosphere. Pupils take part in regular yoga, forest school, cooking and meditation sessions to help them to feel calm and emotionally-regulated.

The parent of one ‘Hubster’ said: “The kindness and compassion they have shown my son has helped his confidence grow and his anxiety lessen. This has enabled him to engage with school transition after two years out of the education system. The Hub has helped him to maintain his love of learning, make new relationships and be comfortable in his own skin.”

The Thrive Ambassador Schools scheme has been launched as a way of recognising 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 for schools that achieve the highest standard across all five categories.

As well as submitting an in-depth application form, the school was visited by Thrive staff to observe and assess the way that teachers and other staff implement the Thrive Approach® to help build the emotional resilience of children, so that they can better manage the ups and downs of life and be more open to learning.

“As soon as you walk into The Hub you are met with staff that have created a family unit, with each area of the building devised to meet children’s needs. It was clear during the time I spent there that each staff member puts a lot of time and effort into building relationships, which are at the heart of everything they do. The Hub richly deserves its Ambassador School award,” said Dominique Sagar, Thrive Relationship Manager for the North West, North East, Yorkshire and Humber.

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.

Pass it on

Small actions can lead to a big ripple effect. If you enjoyed this post or found it helpful, please consider supporting us in our mission to help every child and young person feel safe, supported and ready to learn by sharing it using the social media buttons below.

Want to join a like-minded community of senior leaders and classroom staff benefitting from insights and strategies to improve attendance, behaviour and attainment? Add your email address below. (It’s easy to unsubscribe).

 Join our community of senior leaders and classroom staff