We are very sad to announce the passing away on Sunday of our very highly regarded colleague, Mr Jim Cleaver.
Last week, the NHS launched its Every Mind Matters campaign to support mental health.
It was accompanied by a powerful and poignant video narrated by Royals, Prince Harry, Prince William, Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle.
Alongside this, we have seen primetime television slots ‘paused’ and celebrities encourage viewers to take a minute and speak to the person next to them.
These hugely public appeals can only help improve the issues around mental health by raising awareness and promotion.
Across Unity Schools Partnership, and beyond, this national drive is resonating equally with our staff and students.
Mental health issues in young people is a big issue and a deeply worrying one if nothing is done.
That is why I am proud to see such great partnership work taking place in our schools.
Many primary and secondary schools joined together on Friday to mark World Mental Health Day with a series of events under the #HelloYellow banner.
While there is a non-uniform, fundraising element to these days, it also gives school staff the ideal platform to talk to students, share ideas, start discussions and raise actions going forward.
At Unity Schools Partnership, we are acutely aware of the pressures facing young people and our vow is to do all we can to help support and guide them.
Therefore, we are delighted to have partnered with OM Health and Wellbeing Consultancy to deliver health and wellbeing support across all our 25 schools.
The company, run by local school nurses Annie O’Neill and Sue Miller, will deliver bespoke sessions to each school as it acknowledges that the priorities will differ across different levels of education and localities.
But they will include coping with anxiety, internet safety and exam stress, to name just a few.
Annie and Sue worked with Castle Manor Academy last year and there was fantastic feedback form those involved at the school in Haverhill.
They have now started working with other students and staff in this new school year.
The Trust is placing a strong emphasis on supporting the wellbeing of staff and pupils and we want these sessions to be a springboard for much more work, around this critical issue, going forward.
We will use the sessions to train staff and continue the discussions and actions around this important subject.
Our schools are also working together to provide joined-up wellbeing support across the trust.
We know education is a pressured environment, but we want our young students and our staff to know they are not alone.