10 July, 2021


Some significant developments in the Wellbeing strand of SOC2035 have occurred in 2021.  The Resilience Project was launched across the College.

GOAL: Implement a framework that positively impacts student and staff wellbeing.

The Resilience Project (a highly regarded program) emphasises the benefits of Gratitude, Empathy, Mindfulness and Emotional Literacy in our everyday lives. Students are equipped with simple and effective strategies to monitor and improve their wellbeing, in ways designed to embed positive habits.

In Term 2 staff enjoyed an engaging presentation from Antony Keely, from The Resilience Project, and staff and students received a wellbeing journal to track their individual progress. All students from Prep to Year 12 are now participants.

Junior School Counsellor, Franny Stewart, is overseeing The Resilience Project on the Elphin Campus, while Wellbeing Coordinator, Kylie Wolstencroft, and Dean of Students, Mark Hassell, are coordinating the Penquite Campus. At Elphin, each class teacher is responsible for delivering the program at a pace that suits the age, stage and context of their students. At Penquite, the program is delivered in Horizontal Tutor groups, as each year level has a different series of lessons and activities that they will experience. Horizontal Tutors liaise with each other to ensure that they move through the program at a similar pace to maintain consistency for the students in each year.

More recently, staff from Scotch Oakburn participated in a wellbeing webinar with colleagues from six mainland schools. They shared reflections on our College’s wellbeing journey and learnt how other schools measure and respond to the wellbeing needs of those within their communities. Other initiatives have included a wellbeing curriculum audit to identify and integrate wellbeing principles holistically across the curriculum, and a review of curriculum time allocation to allow for the effective integration of wellbeing and learning in the daily lives
of our students and staff.

Next steps include a holistic approach to promoting and developing staff wellbeing (teaching and non-teaching), a review of the College’s teaching of consent and respectful relationships, and our implementation of the upcoming anticipated legislation around Child Safe Standards in Tasmanian schools.

About The Resilience Project

While travelling and working in a remote region of India, Hugh van Cuylenburg was struck by the happiness, resilience, and caring nature of people who lived in very poor areas of the country and experienced abject poverty. He was amazed that people who had so little were able to live such rich and happy lives, so he began to pay close attention to what they did and how they lived their lives. From this, Hugh developed The Resilience Project.

Resilience can be defined as the ability to positively cope with difficulties, challenges and crises, and to be able to quickly return to your normal state after such an event. To develop resilience Hugh identified three crucial building blocks: gratitude, empathy, and mindfulness. Gratitude is about paying attention to the things we have (rather than focusing on what we don’t have) and being thankful for the positive people, things, and places in our lives. Empathy is being able to understand and feel what other people are feeling, and about acting with  kindness and compassion. Mindfulness is about being clear, calm, and present in the current moment, and approaching things in a thoughtful and considered way.

Research has shown that regularly practicing these three ingredients can have a strong, positive influence on our resilience and overall wellbeing throughout life.