Building resilience at Holy Family

Members of the parent community of Holy Family Primary School, Merewether Beach, were recently invited to participate in a workshop focused on building resilience.

Organised by the Principal, Sidonie Coffey, the parent workshop provided parents – of children from Kindergarten to Year 6 – with the opportunity to engage in a day of learning, discussion and sharing stories.

Held during Catholic Schools Week, the workshop also provided an opportunity to nurture and support the work parents do in supporting their children through their educational journey.

“We all acknowledge as educators that parents play a substantial role in the development of resilience in their children. Resilient children withstand the pressures that school provides more effectively than children who are not resilient,” said Mrs Coffey.

Mrs Coffey, who has been teaching for more than 40 years, says she has seen a gradual decline in the ability of students to deal with challenging situations that require specific skills.

“For some students, these skills are inherit, for others they need to be taught. The workshop aimed to assist both parents and their children to become more resilient.”

To this end, the workshop involved discussion, input regarding research around the area of building resilience, practical strategies and some take home reading.

“I have many ‘life experiences’ –  observed over my years in teaching – and, as an experienced principal, where I have observed the positive power of resilience in many ways. I shared these experiences with parents who also had the opportunity to share their positive tips and ideas with each other,” she said.

Holy Family is a Positive Behaviour For Learning school that values each individual student and each individual for his or her unique abilities and talents.

The three main focus areas for developing a Positive Behaviour For Learning are respect, responsibility and resilience. As a school community, Holy Family is creating more awareness around the importance of resilience in everyday school life.

“The often unpredictable nature of life can put enormous challenges before us where we have to dig deep and find the courage and strength to overcome the tough stuff,” said Mrs Coffey.

“I don't want to see students buckle at the knees when they don't get their own way or throw the towel in when tasks may require more effort.

“I want to see the 'language' of resilience become accepted culture not only in my school but also in the homes of our students. We need a village to raise our children,” she said.

To find out more about Holy Family Primary School, click here.

Gabrielle Sutherland Image
Gabrielle Sutherland

Gabrielle Sutherland is a Marketing & Communications Officer for the Catholic Schools Office and a regular contributor to and Aurora.