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Newly appointed Director of Student Wellbeing, Brett Borbely, brings to Ivanhoe Girls' years of experience in caring for the hearts and minds of young people. Here, she explains the importance of equipping students with the emotional skills necessary for an ever-changing world. 

How many of those reading this article currently hold a job or work within an industry that did not exist when they were children? While the exact statistic is unknown, we all know that our world is changing quickly around us. Each generation is exposed to new issues and new opportunities. As our imaginations ignite and we work to problem solve, develop or facilitate, the inevitable creation of new ideas, jobs and prospects comes to fruition. 

Therefore, as we reflect upon the progress of each day, we must ask ourselves: How do we, as educators and parents, support our daughters, the leaders of tomorrow, to become the people they need to be in a world not yet known?

Brett Borbely, Director of Student Wellbeing

The answer is complex, but it lies somewhere in understanding that we must not only focus on the technical skills and content knowledge of specific industries. Rather, we must also supplement those understandings with the “soft skills”, the “human skills”, the skills of wellbeing. These skills include knowing how to develop belonging and authenticity within positive relationships and setting healthy boundaries; they include mental health awareness and self-care routines; they include the compassion for individuals and communities affected by our words and deeds; and they include explicitly developing emotional intelligence.

In a 2020 study conducted by the Australian Council for Educational Research, the results showed that by participating in robust wellbeing programs in school, students experience both academic and non-academic benefits¹. 

Therefore, in order to prepare and empower the students in our charge for the world of tomorrow, Ivanhoe Girls’ is dedicated to fostering belonging and engagement, to provide mentoring and to explicitly teach the competencies required to build social-emotional health. 

We will continually strive to elevate our wellbeing programs and curriculum, so that our students continue to develop the necessary skills to navigate their undiscovered but exciting futures.

This is what wellbeing means at Ivanhoe Girls’. The School has a reputation for its wonderful pastoral care system and as we look forward, the work for all of us is to sustain the growth already made and to build upon that rock-solid foundation. In doing so, our students will continue to speak for themselves, articulately, confidently and compassionately; they will form messages aligned with their values; they will care for themselves while also working collaboratively with others on shared purposes; they will go on to be active and conscientious world citizens; and they will face their futures with resilience, grit, determination and self-efficacy.

Brett Borbely
Director of Student Wellbeing 

1. Dix, K., Ahmed, S. K., Carslake, T., Sniedze-Gregory, S., O’Grady, E., & Trevitt, J. (2020). Student health and wellbeing: A systematic review of intervention research examining effective student wellbeing in schools and their academic outcomes. Main report and executive summary. Evidence for Learning.