Support for education staff during the cost of living crisis
The past few months have seen teachers’ pay thrust into the spotlight, with schools affected by strikes, union negotiations and overall low morale.
And with the UK experiencing a cost of living crisis, many teachers are finding themselves struggling to make ends meet. We spoke to Emily Kenneally, Content & Media Manager at Education Support, for her tips and advice for teachers and other educators to support their mental and financial wellbeing over the last term of the school year.
Education Support is a UK charity dedicated to improving the mental health and wellbeing of the education workforce. They also carry out research and advocate for changes in Government policy for the benefit of the education workforce.
As teachers and education staff, we know your main focus is helping your students to learn and grow. Often there are factors outside the classroom that can make you feel under pressure, or pull your focus in other directions. The cost of living crisis, Ofsted inspections, strike action and the post-pandemic impact on mental health and public services are just some of the significant outside pressures that you face.
Amidst all of this – and the extra miles you go to for your children and young people – it’s vital that you take care of yourself. You are an educator, but you’re an individual human being too! To stay well enough to do a great job in the classroom, it’s important to make time for the things that you enjoy, that make you laugh, that energise you and connect you to your loved ones and sense of self.
In this toolkit, we have curated a set resources which we hope are practical and actionable, as well as providing inspiration for thinking about your own wellbeing differently. We aim to help you create new improved habits, by building resilience and developing effective coping strategies.
School leaders and managers play a vital role in creating a positive team culture, which usually starts with role-modelling behaviour that prioritises mental health and wellbeing. Which is why we have resources specifically for leaders and managers in this toolkit.
Remember, you never have to suffer alone. Education Support provides immediate, confidential emotional support via its helpline: 08000 562 561. You can also print a helpline poster and put it up in your staffroom.
Visit the Education Support website for more free resources and services for teachers and education staff.
Resources in this toolkit:
This PDF is for teaching assistants - it covers how to create your own budget, and includes a benefits checker so you can find out what you're entitled to claim.
Some coping strategies may help in the short term, but go on to cause harm if relied on in the long term. These guides will help you explore how to spot the signs of harm in yourself or a colleagues and where to get support if it’s needed.
Top tips on coping with news anxiety
Teachers, their pay, and potential strikes have been featured heavily in the news recently. This article from Medical News Today offers advice on coping when the news focus is affecting your mood or wellbeing.