Our Focus on Your Mental Health & Wellbeing

At St Gregory’s, we are committed to supporting the emotional health and wellbeing of our pupils, parents and staff.

We know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that positive mental health is everybody’s business and that we all have a role to play.  

Our Wellbeing Policy can be located here

Debbie Williams is our qualified Senior Mental Health Lead. The SMHL champions efforts to promote and support mental health and wellbeing, bringing about strategic change to deliver an effective whole school approach.

At St Gregory’s we use Trick Box as part of our well-being approach, across the school. This is a fun and effective personal development programme. Children will be introduced to 24 ‘tricks’, designed to give them positive habits for life. The tricks will help the children to build their confidence and communication skills, manage emotions and find solutions to challenges. They practise the tricks at school and home.

  • Recognise and manage emotions
  • Develop effective coping mechanisms
  • Develop mindful awareness and relaxation
  • Problem solve, develop perspective and create solution-thinking
  • Build motivation and enhance personal learning
  • Set and achieve positive goals
  • Develop communication and interpersonal relationships
  • Develop empathy and contribution
  • Recognise and build on strengths in self and others to develop character
  • Create long-term empowered thinking, autonomy and resilience

As a school, we will be offering in the Summer term an opportunity for parents to engage with the Trick Box, parent programme, which covers x4 areas: Stress, Confidence, Assertiveness and Goals. This programme is designed to support parents themselves and also for them to be able to support their children.

Mrs Michelle Dunn and Mrs Debbie Williams have both qualified to be Facilitators of the programme and look forward to welcoming parents to take part.

At our school we:

  1. help children to understand their emotions and feelings better                             
  2. help children feel comfortable sharing any concerns or worries
  3. help children socially to form and maintain relationships
  4. promote self-esteem and ensure children know that they count
  5. encourage children to be confident and ‘dare to be different’
  6. help children to develop emotional resilience and to manage setbacks 

We offer different levels of support:

Universal SupportTo meet the needs of all our pupils through our overall ethos and our wider curriculum. For example, developing resilience for all.

Additional support For those who may have short term needs and those who may have been made vulnerable by life experiences such as bereavement.

Targeted support- For pupils who need more differentiated support and resources or specific targeted interventions such as wellbeing groups or personal mentors.


An ELSA in a school is an Emotional Literacy Support Assistant. There is a recognised ELSA training course aimed specifically at Teaching Assistants in schools. Examples of things covered on the course are social skills, emotions, bereavement, social stories and therapeutic stories, anger management, self-esteem, counselling skills such as solution focus and friendship.

At St Greg’s we are delighted to offer ELSA across the whole school.  Mrs Coling is our ELSA qualified teaching assistant.  If you are interested in learning more about this work within St Greg’s please get in touch with the school office. 

If you know a child has any worries or concerns over their exam results, or they are struggling with their mental health, there are organisations they can talk to – without judgement.

Samaritans – on-hand to listen 24/7 – call 116 123
Connection – Dorset’s NHS mental health helpline – call 0800 652 0190
Text ‘SHOUT’ to 85258 for confidential support via text message
Chat online – visit www.kooth.com
The Mix – support through 1-2-1 chat, helpline or email
ChildLine – call 0800 1111, chat online or email


Children who are identified as needing extra support, whether it be short term, long term or just to catch up occasionally, meet with Mrs Coling during the school day. Through different activities they are encouraged to discuss their feelings / moods / worries / life inside or out of school – Mrs Coling works with these children, sets them challenges and provides an adult for them to go to at any time.  Relationships are developed and these will be long lasting throughout their time at St Gregory’s.

Using Animals for Support

At St Greg’s we understand the importance of animals for children’s wellbeing and progress, specific benefits are:

  • Increase children’s attention and concentration performance
  • Reduce anxiety
  • Provide an outlet for excessive energy
  • Provide a non-judgemental companion
  • Provide social interaction
  • Decrease stress
  • Offer a healthy distraction, through exercise.
  • Increased empathy, learning to share
  • Building trust

Please allow us to introduce our fluffiest members of staff below:

Meet Cookie & Cream:

  • Cookie & Cream are Guinea Pigs
  • They are sister and the best of friends
  • They arrived at the school in the summer of 2021
  • They were named by the whole school by drawing suggestions from a hat.
  • Lives at school
  • They love cuddles with the children and being groomed.
  • They are cared for by our Guinea Pig monitors from Foxes Class (Yr. 4,5-6)