Teaching can be an extremely challenging profession. The workload is often heavy, and the pressure to succeed can weigh heavily on teachers.

The Education Support Partnership survey of over 3,082 education staff found that in 2022 record numbers of UK teachers and education staff have considered leaving the sector in the past academic year due to pressures on their mental health and wellbeing.

Teacher Wellbeing Training

In order for teachers to excel in their job, they need to be properly supported and cared for. This is where teacher wellbeing INSET training can come in. Teacher wellbeing training can help to improve both the mental and physical health of teachers, which can ultimately lead to better outcomes for students.

It is beneficial to include teacher wellbeing INSET days in a school's mental health and wellbeing programme, but it's crucial to evaluate if it suits your school's staff mental health strategy.

Teacher wellbeing INSET training isn't always the best solution for improving staff wellbeing in schools, here are a few reasons why an INSET day might not work well in your school.

Tick Box Exercise

Some people view teacher wellbeing training as a superficial activity that serves only to tick box or make an appearance of doing something positive, rather than actually having a significant impact. This can have an even worse effect on teacher wellbeing, as it makes staff feel misunderstood and placated, rather than heard and supported.

To tackle this ensure you involve members of your staff team in understanding what the real staff wellbeing issues are, then design a wellbeing training day that helps mitigate against those issues. One of the worst things you can hear as a trainer running staff wellbeing training is the dreaded 'I'd rather be marking or doing PPA, that would be better for my wellbeing than this!'.

To understand staff needs you can conduct an anonymous staff wellbeing survey or even set up some focus groups to discuss challenges and issues staff are facing.

Wellbeing training days for teachers can be a helpful way to get everyone together to really tackle and address and action plan ways to reduce stress and improve wellbeing. Focus on building comradery and honest communication as a foundation for strategic work developing school wellbeing.


The one-and-done nature of a teacher wellbeing INSET days are problematic. Wellbeing is often miss-understood or seen as a bolt-on. Wellbeing can be seen as a subject that can be covered in one or two hours and then we have good wellbeing FOREVER! Imagine if you taught maths or science in that way. It is like going to the gym for an induction and then never going again and wondering why you don't have a six pack.

Costly in time and money

Teacher wellbeing training can be expensive and take up a lot of time. It can be difficult to measure the impact of the training and the return on investment compared to other strategies. It might be tempting to 'get someone to do it for you' and there are many providers out there offering teacher wellbeing training, but we would suggest you consider developing your own teacher wellbeing training which really fits your unique needs and can be built on sustainably over time.

The best way to ensure the impact of teacher wellbeing training is to have a strategic plan to build and reinforce wellbeing over time, listen to your staff's needs, and address any concerns.

This strategic approach to staff wellbeing training is something you can feel confident developing yourself with the help of our Staff Wellbeing Toolkit for schools. Accessing the staff wellbeing toolkit enables you to develop your own staff wellbeing INSET with our evidence-based tools and resources that really fit the needs of your school and team.

How to make your teacher wellbeing INSET day successful

There are several things to consider to make your teacher wellbeing INSET day a success. The list below provides a helpful overview.

Teacher wellbeing INSET days work well when they

  1. Are part of ongoing strategic work with staff around reducing stress and increasing individual and team strategies for wellbeing.
  2. Are tailored to the needs of your school and community. You know your staff team, student body and stakeholders better than any external provider
  3. Incorporate staff voices in their design. Staff really need to feel listened to and understood when putting together a staff wellbeing INSET day. Assuming what they want or need can end up in the teacher wellbeing INSET day having the opposite effect than was intended.
  4. Encourage staff to take personal responsibility for maintaining their own well-being habits and setting their own wellbeing boundaries.
  5. Address issues or concerns about workload. Workload issues have a huge impact on the stress levels of teachers, ignoring them will make the INSET day feel like tokenism and sticking plaster. A better option for a staff wellbeing INSET  may be a day working in staff teams to identify the causes of workload issues and ways to address them so they reduce the negative impact on stress levels
  6. Use a coaching approach. Coaching in education has been demonstrated to be one of the most effective forms of professional development. The process of coaching can also improve wellbeing by helping staff develop competence, autonomy and relatedness essential for wellbeing.
  7. Share evidence-based tools for wellbeing based on Positive psychology. Positive psychology is the science of human flourishing and focuses on promoting positive emotions and experiences. When we feel good, we are more likely to perform well. Incorporating positive psychology into teacher wellbeing training can help teachers cultivate a positive mindset and a sense of optimism that can help them navigate the challenges of teaching.

Our Staff Wellbeing Toolkit programme provides you with tools and resources to develop your own staff wellbeing INSET day using positive psychology, work psychology stress reduction and management theory and practice and a coaching approach.

Ideas for your Teacher Wellbeing Training Day

Developing wellbeing is multidimensional and dynamic. We use the Dynamic model of wellbeing by Nef to explain how wellbeing, also known as flourishing is developed and sustained by individuals and a workplace.  Your staff wellbeing INSET day can focus on developing skills in any one or all of these areas.

Developing wellbeing is not something you do once. Strategies for wellbeing are things we need to help teachers develop on a day-to-day or even moment-to-moment basis. Although a teacher wellbeing inset can be a great way to introduce and share wellbeing strategies for colleagues, there is no guarantee these wellbeing strategies will continue to be used.

Ensure your staff wellbeing training involves some coaching activities that enable staff to set their own personal aspirations for wellbeing that they can commit to. These can be as simple as saying no to things, stopping work at a set time twice a week or not skipping their gym class when school life gets too busy. Peer-to-peer support can help colleagues hold each other to account and also contribute to the development of positive relationships essential for wellbeing.

Building Resilience and Stress Management

Another important aspect of teacher wellbeing training is stress management. We can’t always control the stressors in our lives, but we can control how we respond to them. By offering training programs that teach stress management techniques and strategies for building resilience, we can help our teachers better cope with the stresses of teaching.

Workload Reduction

It is important to address workload concerns as they have a significant impact on teachers' stress levels. Ignoring these concerns may make the inset day feel superficial and unhelpful. To prioritize staff wellbeing, a suggested idea could be to organize a day where staff work together in teams to identify the root causes of workload issues and find ways to address them, then create action plans to reduce the imact of workload. This approach can help to reduce the negative impact of high workload on stress levels.

Job Crafting

Job crafting has been shown to have a number of benefits for teachers. It can help to reduce stress and burnout by making the job more manageable and rewarding. It can also improve teacher engagement and job satisfaction, which in turn can lead to improved student outcomes. By crafting their jobs in a way that aligns with their strengths and values, teachers are more likely to be motivated, productive, and effective in their roles. Your staff wellbeing INSET day can be an opportunity to job craft in teams, identifying strengths and realigning tasks among team members.

Establish Peer Support Groups

Peer support groups can be a great way for teachers to connect with each other and share their experiences. These groups can be organized around common interests or needs, such as stress management, work-life balance, or classroom management. Peer support groups can provide a safe space for teachers to talk openly about their challenges and receive support from others who understand.

Reconnecting with Meaning and Purpose

Teaching can be one of the most meaningful professions, yet often teachers are so busy with the demands of their jobs that they lose sight of the bigger picture. A teacher wellbeing INSET day can be a great opportunity to reconnect with meaning, bond as a team and build meaningful interactions and positive supportive peer relationships.

Prioritising Work-Life Balance

Finally, it is important to make sure that our teachers are able to maintain a healthy work-life balance. This can be achieved through training that focuses on time management, boundary setting, and work-life balance strategies. By empowering our teachers to set boundaries and prioritize their personal lives, we can help them avoid burnout and maintain their wellbeing throughout the school year.

Building Teacher Wellbeing

Teacher wellbeing is essential to maintaining a healthy and productive school community. By offering creative INSET training days or sessions that fits into your wider work developing staff wellbeing and reducing stress can help teachers cultivate the skills and tools they need to thrive as educators. The investment in teacher wellbeing will ultimately benefit our students, our schools, and our communities as a whole. Let’s prioritise our teachers’ wellbeing and support them in their important work.

To find out more about strategies to support teacher wellbeing access our free webinar.

Our Staff Wellbeing Toolkit provides schools with downloadable resources that you feel confident to use to create your own staff wellbeing training, strategy or programme. Find out more here!

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