Last Tuesday we conducted our annual whole school wellbeing survey. The survey consisted of 5 parts, each pertaining to a different element of wellbeing, including physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual wellbeing. We were delighted with the overall results which demonstrates that the boys at Edmund Rice have a strong sense of self, have positive relationships with their family and friends, have developed strong help seeking strategies and partake in activities and habits that strongly contribute to their overall positive wellbeing. Over the next few newsletters I will share the results of this survey, highlighting areas of strength and the areas identified as focus areas moving forward. Providing links to research and articles that provide further insight into each of the identified elements.
This week I would like to share with you the results of the physical wellbeing section.
Physical activity plays a critical role in wellbeing not only in relation to physical health but also in relation to the development of an individuals mental health and the building of positive relationships with one’s peers. We were delighted to find that 90.2% of our students are engaging in regular physical activity. For a greater understanding of the benefits of physical activity read the article on the benefits of physical activity for teens by Ways found here
A balanced diet plays an important role in the promotion of the health and wellbeing of teenagers, ensuring the adequate intake of required nutrients. It is pleasing that here of students report eating 3 meals a day. Please find here a link to an article from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on the nutrition of Australia’s youth that further discusses nutritional guidelines for teenagers.
Survey results indicate that 23.9% of our students regularly skip breakfast. Breakfast is an important part of a young person’s day and in fact research indicates a direct correlation between academic performance and students who consistently eat breakfast. For more information please find here an article from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
A Cancer Council study conducted in 2017 revealed that 1 in 6 teenage boys are consuming 52 litres of soft drink a year. A copy of the report can be found here. The results of our survey indicate that 64% of survey participants rarely or never consume more than 3 soft drinks a week.
Results indicate that 40% of students who undertook the survey usually or always avoid high risk activities. It is important to remember that not all risk taking is dangerous. Please find here an article from REACHOUT.com that provides some valuable insights in relation to risk taking behaviours.
Sleep patterns of 72% of students who completed this survey are sleeping for the recommended amount of time for teenagers. According to research conducted by the Victorian Government in 2018 teenagers require 8-10 hours sleep per night. This study revealed that on average Australian teenagers are getting between 6.5 and 7.5 hours a night. Please find here a summary of the Sleep and wellbeing summary report conducted by the Victorian Government, containing some great tips for those parents whose sons are not getting enough sleep.
I encourage you to talk to your son(s) about his physical wellbeing and together explore ways in which you, together, can continue to build on his strengths in this domain and improve areas that would benefit from further attention.
Director of Pastoral Care & Wellbeing