EPSB.ca » Our District » Board Policies & Administrative Regulations » A - Foundations and Philosophic Commitments » AEBB.BP Wellness of Students and Staff

Wellness of Students and Staff

  • Code: AEBB.BP
    Topic: Wellness of Students and Staff
    Issue Date: 18/12/2015
    Effective Date: 17/06/2014
    Review Year: 2021

Purpose

To assist students and staff in reaching their full potential byproviding policy direction to create learning and working environments that supports a district culture of wellness.

Positive and supportive social and physical learning and working environments address and respect the diversity within our student and staff population and are a key contributor to health for individuals.   A wellness policy supports the Board of Trustees (the Board) in meeting its responsibility to establish and maintain governance and organizational structures that promote student and staff well-being and success, and monitor and evaluate their effectiveness.  

Definitions

Comprehensive School Health (CSH) is an internationally recognized, evidence-based approach for building healthy school communities based on collaboration between home, school and community partners.  A CSH approach to effective school health initiatives uses strategies from all four pillars of CSH as defined by the Joint Consortium for School Health: 

  • Social and Physical Environments includes the quality of the relationships between school community stakeholders, the emotional well-being of students and the buildings, grounds, play spaces and equipment in and around the school.
  • Teaching and Learning includes resources, activities and curriculum where students gain skills and knowledge related to health and wellness.
  • Healthy School Policy includes management practices, decision-making processes, policies and procedures that promote and support health and wellness.
  • Partnerships and Services include connections between schools, families, community organizations, the health sector and other sectors that support student health.

Wellness is a balanced state of emotional, intellectual, physical, social and spiritual well-being that enables individuals to reach their full potential.  Personal wellness occurs with commitment to a lifestyle based on healthy attitudes and actions that honour self and others.

The Alberta Education’s Framework for Kindergarten to Grade 12 Wellness Education, 2009, defines the five dimensions of wellness as: 

  • Emotional wellness is acknowledging, understanding, managing and expressing thoughts and feelings in a constructive manner.
  • Intellectual wellness is the development and the critical and creative use of the mind to its fullest potential.
  • Physical wellness is the ability, motivation and confidence to move effectively and efficiently in a variety of situations, and the healthy growth, development, nutrition and care of the body.
  • Social wellness is relating positively to others and is influenced by many factors including how individuals communicate, establish and maintain relationships, are treated by others and interpret that treatment. 
  • Spiritual wellness is an understanding of one’s own values and beliefs leading to a sense of meaning or purpose and a relationship to the community.

These dimensions do not exist in isolation; it is the balance and interplay of these elements that constitute wellness.  For example, all wellness curricula, including topics considered controversial or sensitive, such as those related to issues of sexual and mental health, are approached through the lens of this holistic definition of wellness.  This provides opportunities for students to accept and appreciate diversity and the uniqueness of self and others. 

Policy

The Board recognizes that wellness is both an individual and collective responsibility. The Board believes that a state of personal wellness enables students and staff to reach their full potential and to contribute in an increasingly interdependent world. The Board acknowledges that only by working in partnership with students, staff, parents, community members, organizations and government can we promote and foster lifelong habits that support wellness.

The Board recognizes that it is subject to different legislative requirements when supporting student and staff wellness. As such, the Board embraces a Comprehensive School Health approach and is committed to ensuring that students and staff are provided with the supports they need to learn about, create and maintain a district culture of wellness. The Board is further committed to providing safe, healthy learning and working environments through prevention of personal and occupational injuries and illnesses, and a proactive approach to creating positive and supportive environments that contribute to the well-being of self and others.

Expectations

  1. Each school and central decision unit shall work towards creating and maintaining learning and working environments that support a district culture of wellness using a Comprehensive School Health approach.

  2. The District shall:
    1. consider student and staff health and safety in the planning, implementation and evaluation of district services;
    2. base supports for student and staff wellness on research, informed best practice and a balanced approach to delivery; and
    3. meet or exceed all legislated occupational health and safety (OHS) requirements through a district OHS program.
  3. School staff shall work collaboratively with district services, parents, government agencies, and community partners to provide awareness of and access to available professional guidance and counselling services for students.

  4. Curricular instruction and the development, implementation and monitoring of strategies to create and maintain a culture of wellness for students shall be in accordance with the School Act, regulations and the Guide to Education.

  5. Staff, and their dependents, shall be provided access to professional employee and family assistance services which offer assessment, referral, consultation, and counselling services. These services shall be confidential except where limited by law.

  6. Assessment tools shall be identified to measure and monitor the effectiveness of the wellness strategies implemented by schools and central decision units for the purpose of local and district-wide planning and delivery of supports.

  7. The Superintendent of Schools shall implement this policy through the establishment of administrative regulations and the assignment of responsibilities as needed.

Accountability

The Administration reports on progress in relation to the supports provided to create a culture of wellness for students and staff through the Annual Report –Wellness of Students and Staff.

References

EA.BP Infrastructure Planning Principles
FA.BP Human Resources Framework
FBCA.AR Respectful Working Environments
GA.BP Student Programs of Study
GAA.BP Delivery of Student Programs of Study
GGAB.BP Multicultural Education
GI.AR Teaching and Learning Resources
HA.BP Inclusive Education
HAA.BP Aboriginal Education
HF.BP Safe, Caring and Respectful Learning Environments
HF.AR Safe, Caring and Respectful Learning Environments
HFA.BP Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
HFA.AR Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity
Comprehensive School Health Approach – Alberta Health Services
Framework for Kindergarten to Grade 12 Wellness Education
Alberta Education - Guide to Education
Joint Consortium for School Health
School Act