The Academic Resilience Approach in the promotion of young people’s mental health: Proposals for its use in schools

Angela Hart, Laura Fernández-Rodrigo, María Cruz Molina, Robert Izquierdo, Josie Maitland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Mental health is related to subjective wellbeing and a full, active and satisfactory life, and not just to the absence of mental disorders.

Young people who enjoy good mental health and who are exposed to fewer risk factors are more likely to have better academic performance and better social development.

In light of the increase in mental health problems among children and young people in Catalonia, with the aim of meeting these needs in schools, the research suggests applying integral intervention models for the development of the individual, boosting their resilience.

A resilience-based school is one that carries out educational practices with a resilient approach, preparing students to face difficulties positively, to have life plans, to develop their potential and, in short, to learn to be happy, so promoting mental health, managing difficult behaviour better and tackling social inequalities.

The Academic Resilience Approach (ARA) seeks to be a strategic practice involving the whole of the educational community to help children and young people, especially the most vulnerable ones, to attain better academic performance despite the circumstances in which they find themselves.

ARA is based on the use of the Resilience Framework as a tool and a cross-curricular element for proposing practices in the school that promote resilience.

The Resilience Framework brings together the elements and specific actions that have shown some evidence in improving resilience among children and young people, such as the importance of basic needs and the feeling of belonging.

The essential steps for adopting the ARA in a school are: identifying a leader in the process; performing a needs audit; identifying the most vulnerable students; ensuring that the community knows what resilience is; planning the actions and doing them; eviewing and redefining the ARA.

The proposals for integrating the ARA in secondary schools are based on redefining the activities already done and designing new educational practices, taking the elements of the Resilience Framework into consideration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-29
Number of pages23
JournalCátedra Educació i Adolescència
Volume4
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 27 Jul 2018

Keywords

  • Mental Health
  • Academic Resilience
  • Resilience

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