St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School receives national recognition for health and wellbeing


St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School in Pentwyn has been awarded national recognition for its work to promote health and wellbeing throughout its school community, at the very highest standard.

Assessors for the Welsh Network of the Healthy School Schemes have awarded the "Healthy Schools National Quality Award" (NQA) for demonstrating excellence in all areas of health and wellbeing, with support from Cardiff Council's Healthy Schools Team.

The Healthy Schools National Quality award is an accomplishment which focusses on the importance of pupil participation in core areas of school life, which directly affect the health and wellbeing of children and young people.

The prestigious achievement requires schools to go through a rigorous process spanning at least nine years and recognises the hard work of staff, pupils and their wider school community.

Some of the highlights included in the report on St Bernadette's Catholic Primary School include:

-         The school environment is welcoming and the healthy school ethos is central to everything helping to create a calm, happy and respectful atmosphere prevalent throughout the school.

-         Leadership is a key feature to the approach and staff and governors are enthusiastic about developing pupils' health and wellbeing. The support of Governors is highly valued and they are very supportive of the healthy school's scheme.

-         Staff provide good role models for the healthy school ethos and regularly participate in physical activities such as football, drinking water and healthy eating.

-         The school utilises the extensive grounds with a playing field, garden areas and playgrounds and the attractive Willow Village enables the children to have quiet time to reflect.

-         Displays in corridors and classrooms are colourful, stimulating and reinforce key health and wellbeing messages such as the UNICEF UK Rights of the Child as well as celebrating projects undertaken by pupils.

-         Pupil voice at St Bernadette's is at the heart of school life, with pupils involved in committees within the Wellbeing Committee at whole school level.

-         The school is very supportive of families and encourages parental involvement at every opportunity and benefits from an active Parent Teacher Association.

-         The school has achieved a series of awards including a third Green Flag of the Eco-School Scheme and the Gold Award of the UNICEF UK Rights Respecting School scheme.

Headteacher at the school, Suzanne Williams said: "This award celebrates the work and dedication of the whole school community at St Bernadette's in all seven of the health topics set.

"We were thrilled with our report and touched by its positivity. It recognises the importance we place on being a welcoming and happy school, respectful to all with a strong healthy school ethos.

"Pupil participation, equality, support for the community and a positive approach to health are embedded into our school life. All staff at St Bernadette's will endeavour to ensure that the children in our care continue to thrive becoming resilient, ethical and faith filled young people who respect themselves and others, and are joyful and celebrate together."

Cardiff Council's Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Education, Cllr Sarah Merry said: "Health and wellbeing is an integral part of school life and St Bernadettes have successfully demonstrated how a  broad range of provision, is having a positive impact on their whole school community.

"TheNational Quality Award recognises the hard work from staff, pupils, governors and parents who are working together to promote physical and mental wellbeing for everyone, helping to shape positive future outcomes for their pupils."

Gemma Cox, Principal lead for Educational Settings at Public Health Wales said: "We are delighted that St Berandette's have received our National Quality Award. They deserve this important recognition for their commitment to embedding health and wellbeing through the culture and ethos of the school. This achievement demonstrates how the Welsh Network of Healthy School Schemes are enabling Public Health Wales to work in equal partnership with schools to improve the future health and well-being of our children. By combining our efforts and assets in a purposeful way, we can create a healthier, happier and fairer Wales.

Reflecting the news of the NQA, some pupils from the school said: "I really enjoyed walking the visitors around the school to show them everything that we do. It made me feel proud to show off our amazing school!" Lara

"We work hard and the amazing plaque can now show everyone what amazing things we do." Seb

"Keeping healthy is so important and the award helps us be healthy in our body and mind." Charlie

This achievement takes the total to 14 schools in Cardiff that have now been awarded the NQA,