'Mental Health is a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.'
World Health Organization (WHO)
'People thrive in community and function best when they share praise, comfort, happiness and humour with people they like and respect. In addition to emotional exchange and instrumental assistance, this kind of social support reaffirms a person's membership in a group with shared values.'
Christina Maslach: University of California at Berkeley. World expert in Workplace Burnout since 1970s.
Click on our logo above to download our Press Release
Due to the pressures schools are under, dealing with Covid-19 and related issues, we have decided to run the Teachers Come First Annual Conference 2020
free of charge in a different format.
Teachers Come First
The speakers have video recorded their keynotes and workshops.
Watch and download the presentations by creating an account and logging in using the button in the
We haven't forgotten the free raffle!
Four books up for grabs:
Making it as a Teacher: Victoria Hewett (First prize)
Stop Talking About Wellbeing (2 copies): Kat Howard (Second Prizes)
Doing your Research Project: Judith Bell and Stephen Waters (3rd Prize)
Scroll to the foot of this page to enter the raffle
Raffle ends on Friday 23rd October 2020 at 4pm.
Your conference hosts
The Jeremy Hannay Interview
'There is Another Way'
Why putting teachers first is the only way
Steve Waters, Teach Well Alliance, interviewed Jeremy Hannay, Headteacher of
Three Bridges Primary School, Southall in June 2019
Click on Jeremy's photo to watch the sub-titled interview (35 minutes)
Come to the conference to hear from Dan Fletcher, Year 6 teacher at Three Bridges, how the school achieves outstanding results by putting teachers first
'If we don't take care of our teachers, they won't be able to take care of our children'
A message from the conference team
We all became teachers because we love inspiring children to learn. We know that children do best when we take care of their physical, emotional, physical and mental health. We embrace our role in this vital part of their development. We strive to put their needs first.
But we can't put our children first if we put our own needs last. If we are physically and mentally exhausted, burnt out and stressed. If our school does not appreciate the work we do. If we are constantly judged and undermined by a high-stakes accountability culture which does not trust us to do a good job and robs us of our professionalism.
We have been sold a lie. That the only way to raise standards is by monitoring and measuring everything teachers do. Jeremy Hannay, Headteacher of Three Bridges Primary School in West London agrees. That's why he has rejected all forms of high-stakes accountability. (Click on his picture above to watch his interview).
The Teachers Come First Conference 2020 will expose that lie and show that schools can succeed by implementing a whole school culture of staff wellbeing and mental health.
'If we don't take care of our teachers, they won't be able to take care of our children'
Scroll to the foot of the page to enter the raffle
Teachers Come First #TCFC20: About our Speakers
Claire Clements, Positively Empowered Kids
Session 1. Keynote: 12 minutes. 'Welcome to the Teachers Come First Conference'
Claire is co-founder of Positively Empowered Kids CIC (PEK), a social enterprise on a mission to grow a global network for families and schools to connect with wellbeing experts as an early intervention and prevention of mental health illness.
They have a growing network of over 470 wellbeing experts to support the whole school community, alongside online events, workshops and programmes for families. They have also launched their ‘Family Empowerment Hub’ providing free wellbeing content from experts to educate, empower and inspire parents, carers and their children.
Claire and her co-founder Jackie, are passionate about empowering children, young people, parents, carers and educators to grow healthy thriving minds, building their resilience, self-belief and potential, therefore, having the ability to navigate adversity more effectively.
Keynote Message: Teachers are part of a child's life and community, together with parents. They trained to motivate and support their pupils. But too much which is not part of their core purpose is getting in the way. Watch our inspirational speakers as they address that issue and propose some ways forward.
Professor Jonathan Glazzard Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools, Leeds Beckett University
Session 2. Keynote: 32 minutes. 'Staff Wellbeing and Pupil Progress'. Steve Waters of Teach Well Alliance interviews Jonathan Glazzard
Professor Jonathan Glazzard currently leads on research in The Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools. Prior to his appointment at Leeds Beckett University Jonathan led Initial Teacher Education programmes in the primary phase at the University of Huddersfield from 2005-15. In 2015 he was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship for recognition of his contribution to learning and teaching in higher education. From 2015-17 Jonathan worked at Leeds Trinity University in a cross-institutional role which required him to lead innovations in learning, teaching and assessment. In 2016 he was awarded a Principal Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy for his strategic contribution to learning and teaching. He is shortly to join Edge Hill University as Head of Children, Education and Communities.
Keynote message: According to the annual surveys carried out by the charity Education Support, teachers' mental health has declined over the last three years. This not only impacts on teachers but also affects their pupils. Watch Jonathan's interview to find out about the connection between teacher wellbeing, pupil wellbeing and pupil progress. It might surprise you!
Lindsay Clark, Headteacher Killisick Junior School, Nottingham www.killisick.notts.sch.uk
Session 3. 11 minutes. 'Engaging Parents within a Whole School Wellbeing Ethos'
'Killisick is a happy, well-regarded and caring junior school with a welcoming atmosphere. We have a hard-working staff team, enthusiastic children and supportive governors and parents. The school is committed to raising standards and providing a high-quality learning environment. We have enthusiastic, happy, well-mannered children who are keen to learn. The excellent support for pupils leads to pupils' good behaviour, highly positive attitudes and good spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.'
Session Message: Lindsay Clark explains how wellbeing is the foundation of the relationships between children, teachers and parents. Her deceptively simple message is: If the teachers are happy, if the parents are happy, the children are happy. Find out how her school puts this truth into practice.
David Gumbrell: The Resilience Project
Session 4: 20 minutes. 'Feeling Frayed: How to Maintain your Strength'
'I have been a teacher in Surrey for over 20 years, in five different schools across the county. I have been a Headteacher, holding positions of responsibility for Maths, ICT and NQT mentoring along the way. Throughout my career, I always endeavoured to develop a team, to nurture an individual teacher’s career, to protect the wellbeing of children and staff. The Resilience Project is a natural progression to these aims'.
Session Message: David Gumbrell uses the power of metaphor in story-telling to emphasise the importance of taking care of ourselves. Is your rope frayed? What can you do to support yourself? David suggests how we can become more self-compassionate.
Jackie Wilson: Positively Empowered Kids
Session 5. 22 minutes. 'Take the helm – Simple and effective mindful ways to engage and empower children to grow thriving minds through stormy times (BONUS – You benefit TOO!)'
Jackie is passionate about seeing a change in the education system: ‘Teachers are amazing people who put their hearts and souls into teaching our children. They do an important and difficult job and deserve to be treated as people whose health and happiness is important’
She is on a mission to empower the next generation and the ecosystem around them (parents, carers & educators) with a growth mindset, raise their self-awareness and self-esteem, create a resilience toolkit, and discover their potential.
Jackie works in the community and in schools delivering talks, workshops, programmes, INSET days and whole school well-being from Foundation-KS4. She is also a keynote speaker and author of the upcoming book: ‘This is ME – A Journey of Self Discovery for Teens’.
Session Message: Jackie Wilson weaves the visual image of taking the helm of a ship into an exploration of how we can become more aware of our emotions and help the children to understand and manage their own emotions and feelings. Find out about the Emotions Toolkit and how it can contribute to classroom engagement.
Peter Wingrove, Shaw Mind Foundation
Session 6. 20 minutes. 'Basics of Mental Health Support: Developing a Culture of Staff Mental Health and Wellbeing'
Peter Wingrove, who joined the charity Shaw Mind Foundation in June 2019 as its Operations Director, was appointed as CEO in September 2020. Peter has been the driving force behind the charity's Breathe community outreach programme. The recent launch of its fundraising and awareness campaign, 'Give Five, Save Lives', aims to raise the money needed to train teachers in the basics of mental health support.
Session Message: Peter Wingrove explains how Shaw Mind was formed from the founder's personal experience. He explains the charity's mission to build the foundations of mental health support in workplaces, including schools, by training staff to be 'mental health first aid responders' so that they can provide support when their colleagues are showing signs of mental ill-health.
Dan Fletcher, Three Bridges Primary School, Southall, West London https://www.threebridgesprimary.co.uk/
Session 7. 20 minutes. 'Putting Teachers First: Impact and Outcomes'
Dan started teaching 6 years ago after working in the private sector for a defence company. He was brought up in from Preston but ended up in London to start his teaching career. He taught in another school in Uxbridge before moving to Three Bridges Primary School three years ago. He is currently teaching in Year 6.
Session Message: Dan Fletcher describes the two very different worlds that he has experienced as a teacher: his previous school and his current school. His powerful reflection on his development as a teacher at Three Bridges Primary School is a striking testament to what can happen when high-stakes accountability is replaced with trust and professional development. Find out how this happens and the impact on teachers and pupils.
Dee Conlon, Sir Frederick Gibberd College, Harlow, Essex https://www.sirfrederickgibberdcollege.org/
Session 8. 12 minutes. 'Prioritising and Protecting Staff Wellbeing'
Dee Conlon grew up in Hackney. She studied Mathematics at QMUL and after gaining a PGCE from IOE, began her teaching career in a comprehensive school in North London in 2001. She then taught in a variety of schools in North and East London. She has completed her NPQH at IOE and is currently completing a Masters in Social Justice and Education at UCL. She is the founding principal of Sir Frederick Gibberd College, a free school that opened in Harlow, Essex in September 2019. As a member of the Chartered College of Teaching and WomenEd leadership group she advocates collaboration and networking in education.
Session Message: Dee Conlon describes the journey that she and her staff have taken in establishing a new school and how she has put a culture of staff wellbeing as the core of her school. As she says at the conclusion of her presentation, perhaps one day staff wellbeing will be so embedded in practice that we no longer have to make it a priority.
Nic Owen, Zennic Wellbeing
Session 9. 18 minutes. 'Taking Care, Taking Action'
"I’m a mum of two boys who has a passion to improve the mental health and wellbeing of pupils, teachers and parents alike. Using preventative techniques to help improve the lives of young people and those who teach, support and care for them.
"With over 18 years teaching experience I have seen an increase, year on year of children suffering from poor mental health. I’ve seen teachers suffering stress and parents asking for support. Life is very busy and is constantly evolving with the aid of technology and a fast pace of life. There are great expectations made of children, teachers and parents, many of whom are, in my opinion, heading for complete burnout. I aim to to prevent this.
"'We have two lives and the second begins when you realise you only have one.'
Mario de Andrade from his poem 'My Soul Has A Hat'."
Session Message: Nic Owen reminds us that, if we don't take care of ourselves, we might not be able to care for our pupils and our family. She describes 5 steps we can take to avoid burnout. Find out what they are and help yourself to be self-compassionate.
Steve Waters, Teach Well Alliance
Session 10. Keynote: 35 minutes. 'Developing a Culture of Staff Wellbeing and Mental Health'. Suneta Bagri, the Every Teacher Matters Project, interviews Steve Waters, Teach Well Alliance.
Steve Waters taught English and Drama for 30 years, including as a Head of English and Assistant Headteacher, before working for two local authorities as a member of a school improvement team. He is an online tutor and assessor for the NPQML and NPQSL and holds the NPQH. He s a Founding Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching and elected member of council. Steve has been freelance since 2011, delivering training in the Leadership and Management of staff wellbeing and mental health. Steve founded the Teach Well Alliance in 2017 to support the mental health and wellbeing of staff in schools and specialises in teacher Burnout. Steve is also a qualified counsellor and a Mental Health First Aid Instructor. He is co-author of 'Doing Your Research Project' which was published in its 7th edition by Open University Press in 2018. Steve has four children and lives in Manchester. He tweets @teachwellall
Keynote message: The message is simple: If we don't care for ourselves as teachers, how can we expect to be able to look after our pupils? Steve Waters outlines how schools can implement a culture of staff wellbeing and mental health, following well-established principles of whole-school change.
The draw for the raffle took place at 16.15 on Friday, 23rd October 2020.
Click on 'Raffle Draw' below to find out what number was chosen and
to see if you are one of our four lucky winners!