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P137 A Whole School Approach to Loss, Grief and Bereavements
  1. Jane Miller1,
  2. Jacquie Lindsay2,
  3. Jane Kelly3,
  4. Michelle Guthie3 and
  5. Emily McCurrie3
  1. 1Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice, Glasgow, Scotland
  2. 2St. Margarets Hospice
  3. 3NHS GGC Health Improvement

Abstract

Many children and young people will experience bereavement, through the loss of a parent, sibling, grandparent, friend or pet. The term ‘bereavement’ refers to the process of grieving and mourning, and is associated with a deep sense of loss and sadness. It is a natural process; however its effects can be overwhelming.

During bereavement, children and young people can experience a great number of emotions, including sadness, anger, anxiety, guilt, fear, denial, disbelief and confusion. With the right help and support, most children and young people will not require professional help. According to the Child Bereavement Charity, what they do need is people who care and the understanding of familiar and trusted adults. Schools are well placed to provide such support.

A working group has been established with representation from GCC Education Services, Educational Psychology, NHS GG&C Health Improvement and Glasgow Hospice staff. The purpose of the group is to promote a planned and progressive approach to teacher training around supporting children and young people experiencing bereavement, loss and change in line with a Curriculum for Excellence, across educational settings to ensure consistency in relation to Bereavement & Loss. To support and equip staff to take forward learning around bereavement, loss and change with access to high quality resources and training. and to develop an online resource that can be updated as new information becomes available.

To date two study days have been facilitated each with 30 delegates from a range of early years, primary secondary and special needs schools. The evaluations were extremely positive. Future study days are in the planning process with the aim that these days will be ran twice yearly for the foreseeable future. The online resource is complete with a launch date planned for Summer 2013.

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