We had a fabulous professional learning session for our K-6 teachers last week with a first class educator and expert in friendship development, Ms Dana Kerford. This session was followed in the evening by a wonderful parent and student workshop on friendship also facilitated by Dana.
Dana is the founder of the URSTRONG Program which explicitly teaches students how to develop healthy friendships, recognize unhealthy friendships and what the options are if a child finds themselves in an unhealthy friendship.
The program also teaches students how to manage conflict in a positive way, especially core strategies to deal with “friendship fires”. The program builds foundational social skills in students and to recognise when other people are being “mean on purpose”. I loved this concept and it resonated with all of us in the two workshops, especially our students. The program embeds a simple process of what children should do if someone is “mean on purpose”.
URSTRONG is a whole of school program and strategy that Dominic College will adopt as a foundation stone to ensure we have and maintain a safe school in which our students learn specifically how to be kind to each other and deliberately support themselves in being happy children and young people.
Well done to our Pastoral Care Team for initiating this for Dominic which will be implemented through our EMPOWER program.
Beth Gilligan - College Principal