Our school environment welcomes and respects people from all backgrounds.
At Bankstown Girls, we understand that schools have an important role in student wellbeing and mental health. With the community we have created at Bankstown, we are confident there will always be someone that students can turn to for wellbeing support.
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Our relieving Head Teacher of Wellbeing, Mrs M Varikos, is responsible for the overall development of school policies and practices relating to student wellbeing, pastoral care, and the management of behavioural development.
Our Wellbeing Team is led by the Head Teacher of Wellbeing, Ms Varikos, and is made up of six Student Advisors, one for each year group. In 2022, these are:
- Year 12 - Ms Matty (HSIE faculty)
- Year 11 - Mrs Ijaz (Science faculty)
- Year 10 - Miss Baddah (PDHPE faculty)
- Year 9 - Ms Weston (Maths faculty) / Ms Amin (Support Faculty)
- Year 8 - Mr Golestan (Science faculty)
- Year 7 - Ms Cowin (Support faculty)
The team also includes Ms Hargreaves (School Psychologist), Ms Lynch (School Counsellor), Ms Hundy (Career Officer), Mrs Kalavitis (Student Support Officer), and the two Deputies, Mrs Porreca, who as part of her whole school role in 2022 monitors the welfare issues of Years 7, 9 and 11 and Mr Leary who monitors Years 8, 10 and 12.
The Wellbeing Team provides ongoing support and processes for reviewing and renewing student wellbeing. They are responsible for addressing the individual needs of students who may require additional planning, support, and adjustments. This can include a focus on one, or a combination of, the following wellbeing concerns: disability; behaviour/social/emotional development; mental health difficulties; gender identity and gender expression; and school refusal.
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Wellbeing initiates and coordinates activities related to the:
- Attendance Policy
- Anti-Bullying Program
- Vaccination Program
- Student Mentoring Program
- Peer Mediation Program
- Volunteering Program
- Peer Support Program
Furthermore, each Student Advisor runs a welfare program that teaches leadership skills and promotes resilience and connectedness to the school.
- Year 7 – Peer Support
- Year 8 – Body Image and Resilience
- Year 9 – Positive Relationships
- Year 10 – Work Ready and Leadership
- Year 11 – Peer Support Leadership
- Year 12 – Leadership and stress management in HSC
Each semester Student Advisors organise a Merit Assembly where the students in their year group can be congratulated for their creativity, diligence in class or community work.
There are also an additional range of welfare programs that cater to more than one year group.
- Peer Mediation – Years 10, 11 & 12 students are trained in Restorative Practice and use their skills as a first step in sorting out problems between younger students. These students are invaluable as part of the school's Anti-Bullying Program.
- The Premier's Volunteering Challenge – Years 9, 10, 11, & 12 students earn certificates for the hours they put into environmental and fund raising projects for community organisations such as RSPCA and The Sea Shepherd Trust. They also work in the school garden which was created as a joint project with the Environmental Committee.
- Community Link Projects : Blood Donation – Red Cross, Stewart House participants, Youth Housing Scholarship recipients, ABCN Scholarships, ZONTA, International Women's Day Breakfast, Community based Student Mentoring, MTC Mentoring, Links to Learning, Support a Sister.
The Wellbeing Nurse
The role of the wellbeing nurse (formerly 'WHIN Coordinator') is to:
- identify and address health and social needs of students and families
- coordinate appropriate intervention, assessments and referral of students and families to services and programs
- contribute to care coordination and case management of students and families
- build trusting relationships with students and families to identify and assess their health and social needs and address barriers to accessing services
- support access to health promotion to improve health literacy and engagement of students and families
- develop networks with health providers to build strong relationships and effective referral pathways.
This page was last updated March 29, 2022.