Child Bereavement UK are experts in supporting schools within the context of bereavement within a school community. Through their work they have identified some of the key barriers for schools in responding appropriately and quickly to the needs of those affected by a bereavement. By working in partnership with LGfL, Managing a sudden death in the school community has been produced. This open access resource has been designed to bring the key information in both a video and text format with a quick and accessible interface.
Grief is a normal and natural response to loss, yet how pupils are supported can have significant impacts on long term outcomes. Young people tell us that how their school responds is something they never forget. This resource aims to provide an accessible support gateway to the effective response to death within school community. Simple, short guidance through quotes, external inks and video interviews with experts helps provide the information you need at the right time to ensure the whole school community can work together to support each other.
There are two ways in which this resource has been designed to be used.
- General Staff CPD – Preparing in advance
Raising awareness through staff CPD in advance of a predicted (or unpredicted) death within the school community ensures that when an event occurs staff know where to go immediately to receive appropriate guidance.
- Use in a time of need
The portal is designed to provide immediate support for schools that find themselves unexpectedly managing a sudden unpredicted death within their community. The resource is structured to make the guidance clear and accessible for fast assimilation of immediate actions for staff members.
The Support Gateway includes
- The first 30 minutes
- Breaking bad news
- Supporting a bereaved family
- Supporting the school staff
- Traumatic deaths
- Social media and media relations
- Looking to the future
Video clips, information packs and external links are provided for staff to deliver comprehensive support.
‘This resource development has been an important piece of work to undertake in partnership with Child Bereavement UK. In times of need and extreme pressure following a sudden death within the community, we have utilised the power of online technology to provide invaluable and time critical guidance for different members of school communities. Sadly, recent events in London and Manchester, featured in the media highlight the impact of loss of life and the impact on local and school communities. In reality, many school communities are managing complex situations at short or no notice every day. We hope the format of the guidance through the use of short format video answers to key questions and relevant links and simple guidance can help manage the pressures for school leaders.’
Bob Usher – LGfL Content Manager
‘From our experience of running a national helpline for over 15 years, Child Bereavement UK is acutely aware of the very real challenges schools experience when they are faced with the sudden, unexpected death of a pupil, a parent or a member of staff. Many head teachers have shared with us that they feel ill-equipped to respond in the immediate aftermath of these sudden and often traumatic incidents; they are concerned to do their best, but are unsure as to how they should inform staff and pupils and what support to offer.
Child Bereavement UK has therefore greatly valued the opportunity to work with London Grid for Learning, drawing on their experience in online technology, to create a resource that can enable schools to access information and guidance simply and quickly around the key considerations when responding to a death in the school community. How schools manage these events is so important; bereaved children and young people tell us that the way their school responds at such a difficult time is something they never forget.’
Dr Ann Rowland – Director of Bereavement Support and Education
16th-22nd November is Children’s Grief Awareness Week UK, this is designed to raise awareness of bereaved children and young people in the UK, and how providing those affected with free, professional support can make the world of difference to their future. More resources to support schools can be found on our blog.