Respectful relationships and Positive Education

Mutual respect is an essential tenant of establishing successful relationships; reducing conflict and misunderstanding while also fostering cohesive and positive relationships.

This emphasis on building respectful relationships is a fundamental component of Positive Education, and is one that has been recognised and embraced by Salisbury High School. 

Deputy Principal, Ms Sylvia Groves, believes that developing positive relationships not only encourages positive behavior, but also fosters a mutually conducive learning and teaching environment for staff and students of Salisbury High School.

Salisbury High’s Positive Education journey started three years ago. Today, Salisbury High has a team of eight staff who are fully trained to implement an action plan that encapsulates the spirit of mindfulness and positive behaviours among student and staff. 

An additional 20 staff are currently undergoing additional Positive Education training to further develop their teaching skills and to familiarise themselves with the positive language and terminologies associated with Positive Education. 

“Positive Education fits extremely well with our learning and caring philosophy. We run an existing programme that promotes positive behaviours in our school and Positive Education can provide the language and structure to help us further develop our school’s teaching and learning philosophy,” said Ms Groves. 

To this end, Salisbury High has put in place a Positive Education action plan to help the school manage and build respectful relationships between their students and staff. 

“Mindfulness is being introduced to classes and visual displays advocating positive behaviours are visible around our school. Positive Education is also on the agenda of every staff meeting. As part of our Positive Education offering, Salisbury High has also organised a “Wellbeing Day” which invites the school and the wider community to come together to learn more about wellbeing, mindfulness and respectful relationships,” she said. 

Ms Groves believes that incorporating Positive Education into Salisbury’s existing teaching practices is vital and necessary in today’s complex learning environment.

“As a school, we need to be proactive rather than reactive in looking for ways to maintain and improve our teaching and learning environment. This way, we can provide better support our staff and our students to work towards building up resiliency and positivity in learning,” said Ms Groves. 

“So far, the response we’ve had from staff and students about the implementation of Positive Education programmes has been well-received. We have observed an encouraging change in behaviours and attitudes around the school as well.” 

“Through the implementation of Positive Education and our emphasis on fostering positive relationships, staff and students at Salisbury High School are more open to displaying positive behaviours and attitudes due to regular encouragement and reinforcement. This ultimately lends itself to the development of more resilient staff and students and will lead to better learning outcomes. Positive Education is being embraced as part of our culture and it is here to stay,” she added.

December 2015