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School approaches to improving the social and emotional wellbeing of adolescents: A review of school-based interventions which promote positive peer relations and an exploration of one secondary nurture group

School approaches to improving the social and emotional wellbeing of adolescents: A review of school-based interventions which promote positive peer relations and an exploration of one secondary nurture group
School approaches to improving the social and emotional wellbeing of adolescents: A review of school-based interventions which promote positive peer relations and an exploration of one secondary nurture group
Social and Emotional Wellbeing (SEWB) during childhood and adolescence is critical to future success and life satisfaction and can be viewed as the foundation for healthy behaviours and educational attainment (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, 2018). Organisations, such as schools, who have regular contact with and influence on young people, need to ensure that their SEWB is effectively promoted. A systematic review was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of secondary school-based interventions intended to impact positively on peer relations and, hence, influence SEWB. Nine studies were identified through a systematic literature search, using a mixture of quantitative and qualitative approaches. Findings indicated a need for future research which specifically seeks to measure the impact made on peer relations, using measures which can be effectively compared across studies, in order to reach more detailed conclusions. Findings also highlighted a need to consider how the skills developed during interventions can be successfully maintained and generalised to the wider environment.

In Chapter 2, a single school case study design was employed which explored how a Nurture Group (NG) functioned within a mainstream secondary school. NGs, derived from attachment theory, have been widely implemented with vulnerable young people in mainstream primary schools to support the development of secure relationships and so promote readiness for learning. Success of the intervention within the primary school environment has led to increasing interest in the applicability of NGs to secondary school provision. A detailed consideration of whether and how NGs can be implemented successfully within a secondary school context was made. The experiences and perceptions of NG and non-NG pupils and school staff were explored through individual semistructured interviews and focus groups. Thematic analysis of the data led to the identification of three main themes and nine sub-themes, which were developed across the three stakeholder groups. Findings suggest that secondary NGs can provide extensive support for vulnerable pupils, including the development of positive peer relations, but the successful implementation of NGs in the secondary school environment is likely to relate, more widely, to whole school approaches and ethos. Implications for school and educational psychology practice were considered and a number of recommendations for supporting the development of secondary NG practice were made. These included embedding NG practice into whole school culture, adopting a more flexible approach to NG organisation and considering the particular needs of Year 11 pupils.
University of Southampton
O'Farrell, Karen, Jane
c79b2883-c189-4367-901a-8d9808ed477a
O'Farrell, Karen, Jane
c79b2883-c189-4367-901a-8d9808ed477a
Kreppner, Jana
6a5f447e-1cfe-4654-95b4-e6f89b0275d6
Cunningham, Larissa
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O'Farrell, Karen, Jane (2019) School approaches to improving the social and emotional wellbeing of adolescents: A review of school-based interventions which promote positive peer relations and an exploration of one secondary nurture group. University of Southampton, Doctoral Thesis, 256pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

Social and Emotional Wellbeing (SEWB) during childhood and adolescence is critical to future success and life satisfaction and can be viewed as the foundation for healthy behaviours and educational attainment (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, 2018). Organisations, such as schools, who have regular contact with and influence on young people, need to ensure that their SEWB is effectively promoted. A systematic review was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of secondary school-based interventions intended to impact positively on peer relations and, hence, influence SEWB. Nine studies were identified through a systematic literature search, using a mixture of quantitative and qualitative approaches. Findings indicated a need for future research which specifically seeks to measure the impact made on peer relations, using measures which can be effectively compared across studies, in order to reach more detailed conclusions. Findings also highlighted a need to consider how the skills developed during interventions can be successfully maintained and generalised to the wider environment.

In Chapter 2, a single school case study design was employed which explored how a Nurture Group (NG) functioned within a mainstream secondary school. NGs, derived from attachment theory, have been widely implemented with vulnerable young people in mainstream primary schools to support the development of secure relationships and so promote readiness for learning. Success of the intervention within the primary school environment has led to increasing interest in the applicability of NGs to secondary school provision. A detailed consideration of whether and how NGs can be implemented successfully within a secondary school context was made. The experiences and perceptions of NG and non-NG pupils and school staff were explored through individual semistructured interviews and focus groups. Thematic analysis of the data led to the identification of three main themes and nine sub-themes, which were developed across the three stakeholder groups. Findings suggest that secondary NGs can provide extensive support for vulnerable pupils, including the development of positive peer relations, but the successful implementation of NGs in the secondary school environment is likely to relate, more widely, to whole school approaches and ethos. Implications for school and educational psychology practice were considered and a number of recommendations for supporting the development of secondary NG practice were made. These included embedding NG practice into whole school culture, adopting a more flexible approach to NG organisation and considering the particular needs of Year 11 pupils.

Text
Final Thesis (Karen O'Farrell) - Version of Record
Restricted to Repository staff only until 1 August 2020.
Available under License University of Southampton Thesis Licence.

More information

Published date: June 2019

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 437059
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/437059
PURE UUID: 715241c8-153e-4890-a43d-aed85d607a9c
ORCID for Jana Kreppner: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-3527-9083

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 16 Jan 2020 17:31
Last modified: 27 Jan 2020 13:42

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Contributors

Author: Karen, Jane O'Farrell
Thesis advisor: Jana Kreppner ORCID iD
Thesis advisor: Larissa Cunningham

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