BLOG POST 4:
MENTAL HEALTH IN SCHOOLS
Using An Implementation Checklist
I mentioned in my most recent post that when implementing any new initiative, it is essential to have a clear vision and set of goals and an overview of the journey you are about to embark on. This is not only important as the Coordinator/Chairperson of a mental health committee or area of improvement, but also allows the whole team and staff to keep track of progress and see where you are heading. It keeps you focused as a team when trying to organise meetings and helps to ensure that nothing gets overlooked.
Having a clear overview and set of steps that need to be taken are a critical part of success. An implementation checklist can provide all of the steps to be taken focused on the process rather than the “how”. This then allows any team to apply it effectively to their setting. By this I mean that the implementation checklist has clear steps that any group would use in order to achieve improved mental health outcomes but the specifics related to the local school environment are determined by each team and therefore may be slightly different for each locality.
An implementation checklist can also help keep the team:
- Stay on track
- Can be a checklist to use to track achievement and progress
- Can be used when planning agendas for meetings
- Can allow a team to start wherever on the journey they want to, while keeping in mind the whole picture
I initially made use of an Implementation Checklist when doing Behaviour work in schools and found it to be so successful in assisting implementation that I created a similar approach when I looked to improving Student Mental Health and Wellbeing. When looking at how to create an overall Culture of Wellbeing in a school I needed a clear direction as to where to start and what had to be covered in order to achieve true and sustainable change. As a result, I created my own Implementation checklist to guide myself and others through the process.
The process of putting this document together meant that I examined all of the focus areas that needed to be covered at the onset. I was then able to use the document as both a planning tool, but also for reflective data to keep track of achievements. I maintained a focus across the document, of processes, rather than the “specifics” of how each step would be achieved and as I approach each new set of tasks I create action plans to match the step that the team are up to.
I am a strong believer that using an Implementation Checklist helps to guide the team and give the team a greater chance of success and accountability. This process has been pivotal to my success as a Chairperson of many committees and in supporting schools within my Consultancy. It has allowed me to maintain a feeling of control when determining what needs to be achieved and gives teams a clear sense of direction when looking to make improvements.
It is an important starting point for any committee or passionate individual and helps guide the team in order to achieve improved mental health outcomes.
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If you would prefer to chat to me in person, I am available via email, zoom or phone to discuss how I can work with you to improve mental health and wellbeing in your school. I can also help your problem solve any issues you are having or help you implement any initiatives you have planned including tying mental health approaches in with behaviour.
If you would like to schedule a Zoom chat with me to see if we are a good fit or ask any questions click on the link below.