Ipswich State High School have achieved Gold recognition in the Be Recognised program, which acknowledges organisations that embed health and wellbeing into their organisational systems and culture.
Ipswich SHS started the Wellness Committee in 2013. They have employed a strategic approach to 'wellness' and imbedding their commitment to staff and school community wellness in the key policy documents of the school. The wellness team members are represented by teachers, cleaners, teacher aides and administration staff. All members have a genuine interest and enthusiasm for building health and wellbeing within the team. Staff are surveyed annually and an action plan is developed with key stakeholder involvement. The committee work as a team, alongside community health representatives and Organisational Health Wellbeing Consultant, Brenda Lack, to identify activities and opportunities to include. 'It's been an exciting journey, and we have enjoyed the support of our Principal along the way. We have worked in partnership with the students to support initiatives - R U OK day and mental health days and cancer awareness fundraisers. We have welcomed our newer staff coming on board to the committee, to identify wellbeing needs of new and younger staff.'
Some of the projects instigated include:
- Healthy recipes on notices.
- Canteen, continue extending healthy menu - achieved a 5 star rating.
- Cleaners perform a daily warm up routine before their shift.
- Personal development sessions from Organisational Health and Wellbeing Consultant - targeting resilience and perception; mindfulness and CBT.
- Six week online fitness and healthy eating challenge, Developing Partnership, with the health and physical education classes, Wellbeing Committee and Cancer foundation regarding a school sunsafe hat policy.
- Cleaners attending Cert III fitness program on Friday mornings to improve fitness.
- Roving staffroom healthy morning teas to showcase healthy meals available from the canteen.
- Staff flu immunisations at school.
- Wellness information board for staff.
- Weekly social afternoons and a social evening each term.
- Healthy snacks in the dining room (nut and fruit packs).
- Loan of fit bits to staff.
- Give a HUG day.
- Gratitude Wall.
- R U OK Day.
- Alcohol free - dry July.
- Breast cancer awareness morning tea.
- Step challenges.
- Guest speakers - women's resilience.
- New staff - breakfast and mentoring.
- Flexischools for ease of ordering healthy meals on line through the canteen.
- Partnership with QEST around health and wellbeing resources.
- Annual Ipswich Park to Park fun run team - family invited.
- After school gym sessions for staff run by the physical education head of department.
- Social staff soccer and netball games on Thursday afternoon.
- Mental Health Day - Herbal tea bag for a relaxation moment.
- Tzu Chi Buddhist community partnership - vegetarian cooking and luncheon for staff.
- Staff use of gym and pool.
- Walking groups after school/work.
- Winner of a silver award for Queensland Government wellbeing program.
- Train another rehabilitation officers specialising in non-teaching staff roles/functions.
- Newsletter items on mental health for families.
- Top 10 secondary school in the state for a healthy options canteen, winning for the second year in a row.
- Annual wellness survey of staff develop annual action plans with meetings each term.
- Started park run community team - 'Ipswich SHS fitness community staff'.
- Mini health expo - partnered by Queensland Health on pupil free days - blood pressure checks, alcohol and cancer awareness.
- Biggest loser weight loss challenge.
- Free 20 minute treatment sessions for the cleaners in emmett technique looking at ailments.
Workplace size: Large (200 employees)
Industry: Education and training