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Barnardo’s Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies: The PATH to Success

The PATHS® Programme for Schools (UK/NI Version)

The PATHS® Programme for Schools (UK/NI Version) promotes the positive mental health and well-being of children in pre-schools and primary schools across the UK.  With its roots in the US, it’s now taking the UK by storm! Since 2008, the programme has grown from being in just 6 schools in Northern Ireland, to now being delivered in almost 500 (497) schools and pre-schools across in Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales.  

Barnardo’s team of specialist SEL coaches support settings over a 4-year period to implement high-quality evidence based social emotional learning.  Through specialist training and ongoing coaching support, schools and pre-schools are well supported to deliver the programme with fidelity. 

Banardo's PATHS resources
PATHS resources

Key to the success and sustainability of the programme is embedding a whole-school approach to SEL; and our coaching team support schools to do just that! 

From supporting classroom delivery to generating cross-curricular links; from training school staff to training parents & playground supervisors; and from supporting with SEL themes outside of the classroom (e.g. assembly, playground games etc) and within core policies – we have you covered to fully place the PATHS® Programme at the heart of your school.

With positive outcomes not only for behaviour, attention & concentration, and social emotional competencies, but also improvements in the wider school ethos and environment –  it’s easy to see why teachers, parents and pupils all love the PATHS® Programme.    

This year, 18 schools and 6 pre-schools across the UK have also achieved ‘SEL Worldwide Model School Status’ – an award which recognises the high-quality whole-school implementation of the programme, and their commitment to embed the programme in all aspects of the school day – and beyond!.  In total, 93 establishments have received this accolade through Barnardo’s and SEL Worldwide.

PATHS resources
PATHS resources

“We applied to take part in the PATHS® Programme because we felt that it offered a more structured whole -school approach, especially towards dealing with emotions and anger management strategies. We wanted a programme that offered a common language and approach for everyone to use with the children i.e. teachers, non-teaching staff, lunch time supervisors etc. We also felt that the PATHS® initiative gave every child the vocabulary and opportunities to express their feelings and provided them with clear strategies to use when they were upset.” (In School Coordinator, N Ireland School)

“The PATHS® Programme through Barnardo’s has brought so much to our school, and we cannot now imagine life without its principles firmly embedded into our everyday practice. Our children love the familiarity of the programme’s approach and it is an absolute joy to see them not only applying the strategies themselves, but also teaching them to their families at home.” (Head Teacher, St Helens School) 

“Through the programme we have been able to empower our youngest learners to develop these key skills including social problem solving, self-control, emotional understanding, peer relations and self-esteem which will hopefully enable them to make positive choices in their future lives.” (Setting Manager, Pembrokeshire Pre-School)

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