Leeds Sixth Form College is celebrating being the first post-16 provider in the city to be awarded MindMate Friendly status for its commitment to improving the wellbeing of students.
To achieve MindMate Friendly status, the college completed an in-depth assessment, focusing on safe spaces, teacher training and tackling wellbeing concerns.
The Health and Wellbeing Service Advisor at Leeds City Council who worked with the college, said: “There has clearly been a huge investment in pastoral and academic support, allowing students to reach their full potential. The college has demonstrated how their staff are committed to going above and beyond for students’ welfare and act as a strong pillar of support, resulting in an outstanding self-assessment.
“Leeds Sixth Form College achieved this status due to its outstanding contributions to support services for students and families across areas including leadership, policy development, curriculum, assessment and school ethos.
Rachael Booth, Principal of Leeds Sixth Form College, added: “Being the first post-16 provider in Leeds to be awarded MindMate Friendly status is a fantastic achievement. Each department makes an incredible effort to meet students’ pastoral needs, enabling them to build vital emotional resilience.
“We understand the importance of supporting our young people and their families, especially during such a difficult period. We are currently planning a ‘green box’ initiative, which will see parents and carers receive a mental health support kit. This will include advice and research-based strategies, which aim to bring a better quality of life during emotionally charged periods, such as the lockdown or exams.”
The MindMate Friendly programme was launched as part of the Future In Mind: Leeds Strategy; a city-wide programme aiming to support young people’s emotional and mental health. The strategy involves working with schools and colleges to help them achieve Mindmate Friendly status, and then Mindmate Champion status.
Councillor Jonathan Pryor, Leeds City Council’s executive member for learning, skills and employment, commented: “The health, safety and wellbeing of our city’s young people is always our top priority. Never has it been so important to do everything we can to support young people, with the uncertainty and struggles they continue to face as a result of Covid-19.
“Congratulations to Leeds Sixth Form College on the outstanding work they are doing to support students and their families, and for being the first post-16 provider in Leeds to achieve Mindmate Friendly status.”
Image: The Pastoral team at Leeds Sixth Form College. (L-R top) Peter Gray, David Kilham and Chris Flint. (L-R bottom) Debbie Gibson and Lou Nutton.