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Focus on wellbeing

David Kirkham
David Kirkham (21 posts) Former Principal, NAIS Manila View Profile

Wellbeing seems to be the new focus across many industries, including education.


This focus is to help us ensure that the mental stresses that accompany our work life are lessened, people are able to deal with the stresses in a better way and that we look at our time in work as positive and rewarding as possible.

Some people do struggle to cope and there are all kinds of specialists available to them if they choose to seek support.

In schools across the world, we have seen a pattern of students struggling with the expectancy of examinations and getting the right grade and many schools do a great deal to help support the students to succeed.

It is really interesting that I read again this week of a school that has banned homework for their younger students, having realized the extra stresses this can put not only on the student but the whole family. A comment from the Headteacher of the prep school featured in the article proudly stated:

"News of our ‘ban’ on homework features in today’s Daily Mail. 

We are delighted that our decision to remove what we see as unnecessary stress on young children has been received so well by everyone in our community and beyond. We really believe that children need some time and space to call their own when they put so much into each and every day at school."


homework ban article 1



If you search the paper online and type in ‘homework ban’, articles from across the world pop up; a father in Australia who banned his daughter from doing homework because he wanted to spend more quality time with her, a doctor in India saying that due to homework and the amount of books the children have to carry to school in their backpacks is causing deformities in the development of the children’s spines. It is fascinating that there is so much research into the effectiveness of homework for our younger students but we as adults see it as normal because we did it when we were at school? 


student stress

Since I arrived at NAIS Manila nearly four years ago, we immediately brought in a ‘no homework’ policy for our primary students.

If you look at the children who have been at the school during that period, we see happy, confident students and important improvements in their grades. They are not missing out by not doing homework or are they held back, quite the opposite they are thriving.

I keep hearing that we are only a small school but we are leading the way in many areas of our education offering here at NAIS Manila.

The best thing you can do as a parent at home to support your child is not to put extra stress on them but enjoy the time being a family.

- David

happy kids