NICE: Evidence for Organisation-Wide Approaches to Emotional Health

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued guidance on how secondary schools can ‘provide an environment that fosters social and emotional wellbeing’.
The evidence gathered by (NICE) demonstrates the importance of:

– Fostering an ethos that promotes mutual respect, learning and successful relationships among young people and staff 
– Creating a culture of inclusiveness and communication that ensures all young people’s concerns can be addressed
– Providing a safe environment which nurtures and encourages young people’s sense of self-worth and self-efficacy
– Systematically measuring and assessing young people’s social and emotional wellbeing, and using the outcomes as the basis for –  planning activities and evaluating their impact
– Developing partnerships between young people and staff to formulate, implement and evaluate organisation-wide approaches

Guidance document

Though undoubtedly welcome in no small way to those suffering in schools it’s a great pity NICE haven’t really  looked at the institutional logic of our secondary schools and questioned some of the assumptions, structures and constraints that lead to the need for such advice in the first place. They seem unable to raise basic questions about every youngster’s need to have control over their own lives. Whilst schooling is essentially univited, compulsory, coercive, age-stage based and over assessed it remains a fundamentally flawed setting for emotional well-being.

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