April 15, 2024

Initiatives by Prestatyn High School and Ysgol Emmanuel in Rhyl have recently drawn the attention of the Minister for Education and Welsh Language.

Prestatyn High School’s anti-discrimination campaign, ‘It Stops with Me’, was set up in 2022 by members of the student body who wanted to stand up to discrimination of any kind. Since its inception, it has led to procedural changes within the school and the launch of a new curriculum called Social Responsibility.

Meanwhile, Ysgol Emmanuel’s trauma informed approach has led to the school receiving the Trauma and Mental Health Informed School Award last year.

Jeremy Miles, MS recently visited both schools to meet with pupils and staff to find out more about the initiatives and the impact they’re having on pupil well-being.

At Prestatyn High School, the Minister met with members of the student council, and took part in a student leadership group talk about the progress of the campaign. The visit also included an informal Q&A session in the school’s boardroom with all the students involved.

Ysgol Emmanuel employs a fully qualified “play therapist”, who works two days a week, and works alongside the staff. During that visit, the Minister also met with the School Council who explained the work that goes on and how it benefits pupil well-being.

Deputy Headteacher of Prestatyn High School, Claire Turner said:

“Our students have worked hard to call out discriminatory behaviour and the impact that this campaign has had on the community has been huge. The school is proud of its learners and is pleased that they got a chance to showcase their amazing work with the Minister.”

Ysgol Emmanuel Headteacher, Rona Jones said:

“The Minister was very impressed with our school and said what a credit to us the pupils were. It was a lovely opportunity to showcase the wonderful work that goes on here.”

Councillor Gill German, Deputy Leader of Denbighshire County Council and Lead Member for Education, Children and Families said:

“It was a joy to welcome the Minister for Education and Welsh Language, Jeremy Miles to both Prestatyn High School and Ysgol Emmanuel to see the sector leading work going on there.

The Minister had shown a direct interest in this work during discussions with him as Lead Member for Education, Children and Families and so I was delighted when he accepted my invitation to come and see it for himself.

I am extremely proud of our Denbighshire schools and to see this recognition of the good work going on in just two of them is enormously pleasing.

I’d like to thank the Minister, the staff and pupils and all of those involved for a wonderful visit.”

Jeremy Miles MS, Minister for Education and Welsh Language said:

“It was fantastic to visit both of these schools, where staff and learners are doing incredible work to create inclusive learning environments which support their wellbeing.

Prestatyn High School’s ‘It Stops with Me’ campaign has had a brilliant impact on the school and wider community, and contributes toward our shared goal of an anti-racist education system.

I was pleased to see Ysgol Emmanuel’s hard work and dedication to prioritising and supporting the well-being of pupils and their award-winning commitment to working in a trauma-informed way.

Both schools should be very proud of their meaningful work, which is making a real difference to their schools and communities.”