The Minister for Education and Skills, Mr. Richard Bruton, TD held a briefing session for the Action Plan for Education at St Brogan’s College, Bandon, County Cork.
The focus of the forum which took place on the 10th February 2017 was on Wellbeing in Education and provided Cork Children and Young People’s Services Committee and other stakeholders the opportunity to participate in a consultation, to raise questions and to put forward ideas for improving the Wellbeing of children in schools.
Martin Ryan Suicide Prevention Officer HSE, Dan O’Shea Educational Welfare Services, Eleanor O’Sullivan, Youth Work Ireland, Karen O’Mahony Cork CYPSC Co-ordinator, Minister Richard Bruton, Jim Daly TD, Tracey Holt Cork CYPSC Co-ordinator, Mary Keane National Association of Principals and Deputy Principals, Pat McKelvey Education and Training Board.
The Department of Education and Skills Action Plan for Education 2016 – 2019 includes the following:
- To support all schools in implementing the national wellbeing guidelines for schools
- To rollout Wellbeing as an area of learning in Junior Cycle to all schools in the 2017/18 school year
- To appoint an additional 65 National Educational Psychological Service psychologists
- To restore guidance provision for all post primary schools
- To expand the Department’s ‘Friends’ and ‘Incredible Years’ programmes to all DEIS schools
The Minister informed the forum that he had …”set out objectives and proposed actions specifically targeting the promotion of wellbeing in our school communities. Today I want to share those actions and objectives with you and I would encourage you to let us know what you think.”
Many questions and comments were raised from the audience;
Tracey Holt,Cork CYPSC Co-ordinator, raised the question of needing to align national policies in support of local interagency working such as Cork CYPSC; ensuring we are all working together to improve outcomes for all children and young people. The importance of having representatives from the National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) on CYPSC was highlighted at the forum - at present this is a gap on the Cork CYPSC. A meeting between Cork CYPSC and NEPS is to be arranged.
The most pertinent question came from a transition year student who asked;
“What will students see that's different?...."
This question is one that Cork CYPSC will keep in mind when developing their three year strategic Children and Young People's Plan.
Cork CYPSC have completed a template to show their actions/areas of work which align with the Action Plan for Education and this will be shared with the Minister for Education and Skills' office.
Panel Members at the Briefing Session were: Dr Fergal O’Neil Chairperson National Educational Psychological Service, Sinead Glennon, Health Service Executive Head of Mental Health Services, Margaret Grogan Regional Director National Educational Psychological Service, Dr Ella Arensma Director National Suicide Research Foundation (NSRF) and Betty McLaughlin President of the Institute of Guidance Counsellors
To read about Cork CYPSC alignment with the Action Plan for Education 2016- 2019 Click here
To read about more CYPSC work Click here