Primary school recognised for supporting pupils' mental wellbeing

Kaizen Primary School senior pastoral lead Jason Summers, headteacher Barbara Sims and learning mentor Alice Bird.

Kaizen Primary School senior pastoral lead Jason Summers, headteacher Barbara Sims and learning mentor Alice Bird. - Credit: Kaizen Primary School

A school in Plaistow has been recognised for its focus on pupils' mental wellbeing.

Kaizen Primary has been named by Thrive -  which trains teachers and other education professionals to support the emotional and social development of children - as its first “ambassador school” in Newham for the role it plays in supporting its 434 pupils to prevent mental health issues.

The Ofsted outstanding-rated school in Elkington Road has been described as a “hidden gem” of the community because of its two acres of outdoor space including a pond, covered yoga corner, wildlife and forest school areas.

Headteacher Barbara Sims said: “We’re really excited to achieve ambassador school status - it’s something we’ve been on a real journey with and it’s wonderful to see the progress we’ve made.

“Thrive has helped us to understand our pupils’ core needs and to better support them and their families. 

“If children don’t feel happy, safe and secure then they are not going to learn. Thrive has helped us to create those conditions for all our pupils.” 

Kaizen Primary, which is part of the Eko Trust, has been named as an “ambassador school with excellence in the environment”. 

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This award recognises schools making a positive impact on their pupils and the wider community by having a focus on emotional wellbeing and creating an environment in which it thrives.

Thrive launched the ambassador schools scheme as a way of recognising excellence in its member schools.

Kaizen Primary submitted a detailed application form and was visited by Thrive staff as part of the assessment process. 

Thrive relationship manager for London, Alistair Dewar, said: “Kaizen Primary School is a fantastic example of a school which has placed mental wellbeing at the heart of everything it does. 

“I know that staff there have worked incredibly hard to embed the Thrive approach and to create a whole-school culture of wellbeing that means pupils feel calm, emotionally-regulated and ready to learn.” 

There are five areas in which schools can demonstrate how they support children’s social and emotional development: environment, leadership, right-time, reparative and relationship.

A special "ambassador school of excellence award" is given to those that achieve the highest standard in all five categories.