It’s not that sort of date, but a pupil from Highfield Community Primary School in Sunderland will be travelling to London to meet with The Duchess of Cambridge. Bailey Dunn is a finalist in the Child Champion Award category in the national Place2Be ‘Wellbeing in Schools’ Awards.
Bailey Dunn won’t be alone in his trip to London as his Headteacher, Mr Simon Marshall, has also been nominated in the School Leader category. To add to the success of two individual nominees, Highfield Community Primary School has also been nominated as a finalist in the School Community Award category. Mr Marshall, Bailey and three other school representatives will travel to the award ceremony at Kensington Palace, where they will be introduced to The Duchess of Cambridge.
Mr Marshall commented on the three nominations that Highfield have received, “It is very exciting for us, we have done really well to get this far. Bailey has done so much to improve his own mental health and that of others. He even mentors other young people now.” Bailey has recently left Highfield to move onto secondary education at St Aidan’s Catholic Academy.
Place2Be is the UK’s leading provider of school-based mental health services, providing emotional and therapeutic services in primary and secondary schools and building children’s resilience through talking, creative work and play. Place2Be currently helps around 90,000 children and The Duchess of Cambridge is the charity’s Royal Patron. Kate will be in attendance at Place2Be’s award ceremony in the State Apartments of Kensington Palace where the winners of seven categories will be announced.
Mr Marshall continued on the subject of Bailey now mentoring young people, “It means children can now talk about anything on their minds, from falling out with a friend to domestic violence. Since we introduced it, attainment has increased rapidly, attendance has improved and exclusions have reduced. It all adds to the better well-being of the whole school and teachers can get on with the job of teaching.”
Highfield Primary is one of just two schools in the finals for the Schools Community Award and the winner will receive a £10,000 prize.
The Duchess of Cambridge being Patron of Place2Be reflects her own interests in child mental health as well as the importance of early intervention. This provides children with in-school mental health services at the earliest possible stage.