• Policy Number: SCS2021006
• Document Rescinds/Replaces: TL201803-1.0
• Policy Released: 23 August 2021
• Review Date: 23 August 2024
• Approved: Executive Director
​​​​​​​• Document Owner: Director: School Support

The wellbeing of all students is at the heart of Catholic Education in Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS), enabling a learning environment which promotes and provides for the spiritual, physical, cognitive, social and emotional growth of our students.

Student wellbeing is a student’s level of satisfaction about the quality of their life at school. Optimal (or desirable) wellbeing is characterised by positive feelings and attitude, positive relationships with other students and teachers, resilience and satisfaction with self and learning experiences at school (Noble, McGrath, Roffey and Rowling 2008).

A whole school approach to strengthening child safe communities acknowledges the strong interconnections between student safety, wellbeing and learning. There is a continual focus on inclusion, promoting positive relationships and safe behaviours. Student safety and wellbeing are enhanced when students feel connected to their school, have respectful trusting relationships with their peers and teachers, feel confident about their social and emotional skills and are comfortable with their learning experiences at school.

This policy is underpinned by the Australian Student Wellbeing Framework which is based on evidence that demonstrates the strong association between safety, wellbeing and learning. The framework recognises five elements that are key to supporting the whole school community to build and maintain safe, positive relationships and wellbeing: leadership, inclusion, student voice, partnerships and support. This is complemented by the Be You Framework, a national initiative for educators, aimed at promoting and protecting positive mental health in children and young people. The integration of both frameworks supports SCS school communities to provide every student with the strongest foundation possible for them to reach their aspirations in learning and in life.

The purpose of this policy is to provide an overarching framework for the provision of an environment in which the wellbeing of students can be promoted and safeguarded.

This policy applies to SCS staff. In this Policy, SCS staff means all employees, members of religious orders engaged in schools, volunteers, trainees, interns and committee members.

The following principles guide how this policy will operate in practice:

  • Wellbeing is central to learning and learning contributes to wellbeing.
  • Each student experiences life uniquely and has value and inherent dignity.
  • Students are able to express their views and are provided with opportunities to participate in decisions that affect their lives.
  • Wellbeing is nurtured in the context of community and respectful collaborative relationships are encouraged.
  • Strategies for enhancing wellbeing can be learned and developed.
  • Wellbeing initiatives and supports should be seen in the context of a continuum ranging from universal support for all students, to targeted interventions for students with complex social and emotional needs.
  • Parents/carers have a primary responsibility for the development of their child’s wellbeing.

4.1 Principals

  • Implement a whole school approach to student wellbeing, within curriculum, pedagogy and practices that is reflected in the culture of the school.
  • Use the recognised data collection tools within the Australian Student Wellbeing and Be You Frameworks to inform a strategic whole school approach to student wellbeing. The Tell Them From Me survey and ACER (Social-Emotional Wellbeing) survey may also inform this process.
  • Comply with legislative requirements in relation to student wellbeing and engage as necessary with external agencies.
  • Engage internal and/or external specialist advice about wellbeing related matters as required.
  • Work in partnership with SCS staff, parents, the school and broader community to achieve the purpose of this policy.
  • Ensure school staff and students understand the requirements of policies and procedures relating to wellbeing.

4.2 Teachers

  • Promote and support the wellbeing of students.
  • Create and maintain safe and positive learning environments.
  • Model and promote socially responsible values and behaviour.
  • Explicitly teach socially acceptable and responsible behaviour including social and emotional learning.

4.3 School Counsellors

  • Work in partnership with parents/carers and school staff in achieving positive outcomes for students.
  • Create and maintain positive relationships with students to support their mental health and wellbeing.
  • Draw on their clinical knowledge and skills to promote student wellbeing across the school.
  • Contribute to a student case management approach as appropriate.

4.4 SCS Student Wellbeing and Learning Team

  • Provide professional learning opportunities to support the implementation of system prioritised Student Wellbeing initiatives.
  • Provide consultation around the development of a strategic whole school approach to student wellbeing.

4.5 Parents & Carers

  • Work in partnership with schools to promote the wellbeing of their children.
  • Support and adhere to SCS and school policies and procedures in relation to wellbeing.

If you have any questions about this document or would like further information, please contact the SCS Student Wellbeing and Learning team at studentwellbeing-contact@syd.catholic.edu.au.

  • Policy Number: SCS2021006
  • Document Rescinds / Replaces: TL201803-1.0
  • Policy released: 23 August 2021
  • Review by: 23 August 2024
  • Approved by: Executive Director
  • Document Owner: Director, School Support