Wellbeing at Ivanhoe

Student Wellbeing – Fostering character and achievement through a strengths based approach

Ivanhoe Grammar School acknowledges the importance of the development of the whole individual. As such we place a strong emphasis on the pastoral care and wellbeing of every student.

As part of our student wellbeing program, we are embracing the ideas and practices of Positive Psychology across all campuses. Positive Psychology is a field of psychology that scientifically studies the optimal functioning of individuals, groups, and institutions. It focuses on the strengths, virtues, beneficial conditions and processes that contribute to wellbeing and thriving. To assist us on this exciting journey we are indeed fortunate to have the ongoing guidance of Professor Lea Waters, an acknowledged expert in this field.

Researchers and practitioners in the positive education movement argue that schools can 'teach both the skills of wellbeing and the skills of achievement' without compromising either. Positive education also works on the precept that the skills and mindsets that promote positive emotions, positive relationships and character strengths, also promote learning and academic success.

The principles and language of Positive Psychology are embedded in all aspects of school life. It underpins our pedagogy, approach to teaching and learning as well as co-curricular pursuits. Dedicated teachers, chaplains, school counsellors, career guidance, peer support and transition programs ensure our students are well supported and cared for throughout their school life. This is enhanced by the explicit delivery of a wellbeing curriculum called Life Matters through both Middle and Senior Years as well as an academic subject in Middle Years called Faith, Ethics and Attitudes.

Our approach to wellbeing involves all staff and engages parents and students in a genuine partnership relating to our primary focus – the opportunity for every student to flourish.

More information about positive education at Ivanhoe can be found on the following link

Wellbeing at Ivanhoe Grammar School poster

Professor Lea Waters

To assist us on our journey of embedding Positive Psychology in all aspects of school life, we are fortunate to have the ongoing assistance of Professor Lea Waters from the University of Melbourne. Professor Waters is a registered psychologist and is currently the Director of the Gerry Higgins Chair of Positive Psychology at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education. 

Read a paper by Lea Waters on school-based Positive Psychology interventions