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Wellbeing & The Amber Flag

Click on the link below to access the full Junior Cycle Guidelines: 

Wellbeing is a new area of learning in junior cycle.  The Wellbeing Guidelines provide schools with support for planning a junior cycle Wellbeing programme.


The Wellbeing Guidelines provide details on the following:


Background and rationale for Wellbeing

  • Wellbeing and the Framework for Junior Cycle
  • Wellbeing – A whole school approach to Wellbeing
  • Wellbeing and the curriculum
  • Assessment and reporting
  • Tools for getting started

What will students be learning in their Wellbeing programme?

Through the Wellbeing programme students will be learning the knowledge, attitudes and skills to enable them to protect and promote their own wellbeing and that of others. The junior cycle Wellbeing programme will begin in 2017 with 300 hours of timetabled learning in Wellbeing over the three years of junior cycle. This will build up to 400 hours by 2020 as the new junior cycle is implemented in schools.

The four main pillars of the junior cycle

Wellbeing programme are Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE), Physical Education (PE), Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) and guidance education.

  • Other subjects, short courses and units of learning can also contribute to a school’s Wellbeing programme. Schools can be flexible when planning their Wellbeing programme. Students, parents and teachers all have a part to play in planning a programme that suits the needs of the students in their school. As part of the new Junior Cycle students will be experiencing a new area of learning called Wellbeing. This will build on the work schools are already doing in support of students’ wellbeing and make it more visible for students.

Why wellbeing matters?

All the day-to-day interactions that take place in school can impact on students’ wellbeing. Therefore everyone can play a part in supporting wellbeing. Students have a right to feel cared for in schools. Developing good relationships in the classroom and throughout the school are essential for students’ wellbeing and for effective teaching and learning. When students feel included, respected and listened to, they are more ready to learn and more successful in their learning. Wellbeing matters not only because it leads to students doing better at school but it can also influence young people’s outcomes as adults.

What is Wellbeing?

We often associate wellbeing with mental or physical health. Wellbeing is broader than this. Wellbeing includes social, emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual and environmental aspects. Learning in Wellbeing focuses on the students’ journey across all aspects of wellbeing. While it is recognised that the journey towards wellbeing continues throughout our lives, it is one where schools play an important part.

Six indicators of wellbeing

To help make sure everyone –students, parents, and teachers – has a common understanding of what wellbeing means, six indicators describe what is important for young people’s wellbeing. These indicators are not seen as goals or targets to be reached. The journey towards wellbeing is never complete and will always involve ups and downs. Often it is through dealing with obstacles and set-backs that people grow. The wellbeing indicators make it easier for everyone to have conversations about student wellbeing and may help identify where a student is in need of support.

6 indicators of Wellbeing:

Active, Responsible, Connected, Resilient, Respected, Aware