Healthy Schools Scheme
The Vale of Glamorgan Network of Healthy Schools Scheme is part of the Welsh Network of Healthy Schools Schemes (WNHSS) and part of Schools for Health in Europe
The aim of the scheme is to promote and protect the physical, emotional and social health and well being of children and young people in Wales.
Recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as playing a key role in promoting the health of children and young people, the Healthy Schools Scheme has been rolled out across Wales since 2000, and is part of Schools for Health in Europe (SHE)
All maintained nursery, primary, secondary, special schools and pupil referral units in the Vale of Glamorgan, as well as Headlands Action for Children School, participate in the Vale of Glamorgan Healthy Schools Scheme. The Vale scheme is managed by Public Health Wales, and actively supported by the Local Education Authority and Cardiff and Vale University Health Board.
The underlying principles of the scheme are:
- The importance of pupil participation in core areas of school life which affect health and well-being
- The importance of the understanding and commitment of the whole school community
- A positive approach to health
National and local programmes and policies
The Healthy Schools team works in partnership with a range of national and local programmes, including the Cardiff and Vale School Health Improvement Programme (ScHIP). Schools are helped and supported to identify and implement a range of activities and programmes that reflect national and local health gain targets, set within a framework of:
- Leadership and communication
- Ethos and environment
- Family and community involvement
Schools are required to develop three annual health actions for the first three years, or phases, and thereafter to adopt a major health gain target over two two-year phases for phases four and five.
At the end of each year schools are assessed. Those schools that have met the required standard and delivered their Healthy Schools targets are awarded a plaque from Welsh Government, presented at an annual awards ceremony.
WNHSS National Quality Award
The National Quality Award is awarded to schools that have achieved the highest standards in all seven Healthy Schools aspects of health and well-being.
To achieve this award schools will have to have participated in the scheme for a minimum of nine years, and to have covered and sustained all the seven health topic areas set out in the WG “Indicators for the WNHSS National Quality Award”.
To date four Vale Schools have achieved this prestigious award Barry Island Primary, Gladstone Primary, Cadoxton Primary School and Llantwit Major School
Some examples of the many initiatives that schools have introduced in partnership with other organisations include:
- A whole-school food and fitness policy
- After-school cookery clubs
- A school nutrition action group (SNAG)
- Safe routes to school
- Programmes to improve emotional literacy e.g.SEAL
- Anti-bullying initiatives
- A school council
- Active playtimes
- Enhanced sex-related education
- Re-cycling and energy conservation programme
- Gardening clubs
- Sun safety
- Hand-washing initiatives
- First Aid training
- A school travel plan
- Healthy lunchboxes/fruit tuck shop/healthier vending/water on desks
For more information about the Vale of Glamorgan Healthy School Scheme please contact:
Christine Farr, Senior Health Promotion Specialist
Catherine Perry, Senior Health Promotion Specialist
Cardiff and Vale Public Health Team,