Ty Gwyn's School Values and Trauma Informed practice
Ty Gwyn's School Values
Ty Gwyn Education Centre’s school values are built on four key principles. They are;
- Be Respectful: Staff and pupils at Ty Gwyn are respectful to themselves, others and their environment
- Be Responsible: Staff and Pupils at Ty Gwyn take responsibility for their actions, personal belongings and school property
- Be Engaged: Staff and pupils at Ty Gwyn are engaged in pro-social behaviour, self-development and contribute to school life
- Be Safe: Staff and pupils at Ty Gwyn are responsible for their own safety and that of their peers and are supported to develop resilience for life and make positive relationships.
Ty Gwyn aims to create a positive ethos and environment within Ty Gwyn community that enables effective learning to take place, so that students can achieve their full potential.
All staff are committed to and will:
- Have consistent expectations and guidance about routines and procedures to support the delivery of high quality teaching and learning, taking place in a positive working environment
- Develop a sense of self – confidence in learners and to be reflective about one’s own actions
- Be emotionally available to all learners during the day, being warm, empathetic and curious
- Develop mutual respect between all members of the Ty Gwyn community with this approach
- Ensure that pupils and parents are introduced on entry to Ty Gwyn's expectations via the admissions process and website
- Ensure that the application of rewards and consequences is consistent and systematic and framed within a trauma informed approach
- Celebrate the success of the pupils in all aspects of school life
- Ensure equality of opportunity for all pupils
- Foster partnerships between home, Ty Gwyn and the wider community
- Create a supportive environment where positive attitudes are encouraged and respected
- Involve the community in celebrating both achievement and the positive aspects associated with appropriate conduct as appropriate
- Promote Ty Gwyn positively as part of the community
Trauma Informed Schools
A trauma informed school is one that is able to support children and teenagers who suffer with trauma or mental health problems and whose troubled behaviour acts as a barrier to learning. Our decision to become trauma informed was born out of a response to major public health studies that have shown that when children who have suffered several painful life experiences, are unhelped, there is a very high chance of them going on to suffer severe mental and physical ill-health. We therefore support learners, communities and parents/carers (to a more limited extent) in providing relationships for children and young people that heal minds, brains and bodies. Key conversational skills in addressing and making sense of what has happened are central to our work and is a major shift in whole school culture at Ty Gwyn.
Why do schools need to be trauma informed?
‘Rising numbers of children are presenting with mental health difficulties in schools and current teaching environments are struggling to keep up. Many children have a high ACE score (meaning multiple adverse childhood experiences) known to leave children at risk of mental and physical ill-health later in life and even early death' (The ACE study Felitti and Anda, a study involving over 17,000 people). With the cuts in CAMHS and with over 1 million children in the UK with a mental health problem, schools are often left holding the baby. Children spend 190 days a year at school so we believe that schools are very well placed to pick up the baton and help these children.
Staff at Ty Gwyn have been trained to respond effectively to mild to moderate mental health problems. The government Green Paper 'Transforming Children and Young People’s Mental Health Provision' (December 2017) wants a Mental Health Lead in every school (trained member of school staff). Their research found that appropriately trained teachers /teaching assistants can achieve results comparable to those of trained therapists. To quote, "There is evidence that appropriately-trained and supported staff such as teachers, school nurses, counsellors, and teaching assistants can achieve results comparable to those achieved by trained therapists in delivering a number of interventions addressing mild to moderate mental health problems (such as anxiety, conduct disorder, substance use disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder)”.