1st Edition

Wellbeing, Education and Contemporary Schooling

Edited By Malcolm Thorburn Copyright 2018
    246 Pages
    by Routledge

    246 Pages
    by Routledge

    Wellbeing, Education and Contemporary Schooling examines the role of wellbeing in schools and argues that it should be integral to core policy objectives in health and education. The whole school focus chosen is conducive to the review of wellbeing in schools, and assists in better understanding the complex relationships between learners and teachers in policy contexts, where every teacher has a responsibility for learners’ wellbeing.

    By exploring a range of debates about the nature of wellbeing, the book shows how a child’s wellbeing is inseparable from their overall capacity to learn and achieve, and to become confident, self-assured and active citizens. Drawing on international curriculum developments, it considers the ways in which wellbeing could reshape educational aims in areas such as outdoor learning and aesthetic imagination, helping to inform programmes of professional learning for teachers.

    Separated into six parts, the book covers:

    • philosophical perspectives on wellbeing
    • policy perspectives on wellbeing
    • professional perspectives on wellbeing
    • practice perspectives on wellbeing
    • future prospects for wellbeing
    • a personal perspective on wellbeing.

    Examining ways in which wellbeing can become a central component of the ethos, culture and environment of contemporary schools, Wellbeing, Education and Contemporary Schooling is an invaluable guide for all students, teachers, researchers and policy makers with an interest in learning, teaching and children’s wellbeing.


    List of Contributors

    List of Abbreviations


    Part 1: Philosophical perspectives on wellbeing

    1. Wellbeing, being well or well becoming: who or what is it for and how might we get there?

    Claire Cassidy

    2. Contrasting concepts of wellbeing and their implications for educational planning

    Malcolm Thorburn

    Part 2: Policy perspectives on wellbeing

    3. The policy prominence of wellbeing and the implications for education

    Malcolm Thorburn

    4. Evaluating efforts to enhance health and wellbeing: A review of policy aspirations and practice developments in Scottish secondary schools

    Malcolm Thorburn & Donna Dey

    Part 3: Professional perspectives on wellbeing

    5. The School Leader perspective: Integrating schools with the communities they serve

    Christine Forde

    6. Teaching for wellbeing: On the importance of creating capabilities in schools

    James MacAllister

    7. The teacher in training perspective: Preparing teachers to incorporate wellbeing into learning and teaching

    Monica Porciani

    8. The pastoral perspective: handling sensitive issues

    Monica Porciani

    Part 4: Practice perspectives on wellbeing

    9. Wellbeing and educational disadvantage

    Sue Ellis & Vivienne Smith

    10. Wellbeing/Welfare, Schooling and Social Justice: Caring relationships with students, parents and community

    Maeve O’Brien

    Part 5: Future prospects for wellbeing

    11. Wellbeing, outdoor learning and sustainable living

    Ina Stan

    12. Wellbeing and aesthetic imagination

    Christine Doddington

    Part 6: A personal perspective on wellbeing

    13. A personal perspective on wellbeing: Lessons learned or insufficiently grasped?

    George MacBride


    Malcolm Thorburn is Lecturer in Physical Education at the Moray House School of Education, University of Edinburgh, UK.

    Maeve O’Brien, Dublin City University, Ireland

    I was delighted to read this book proposal. This book will have a good international marketability at both undergraduate and post graduate levels in the Education field and the disciplinary areas of sociology, philosophy and psychology of education. In my own institution I teach a new 4th year BEd module called ‘well-being care and professional praxis’ . The proposed publication would have been a gift to me in writing that module. At Doctoral level and Masters level I teach modules on well-being and education. US markets should be open as well-being is such a buzz word in education and one that needs a critical and in depth perspective in the field of education studies and practice.


    Clare Wallace, University of Aberdeen, UK

    This is a timely and interesting book that addresses a key issue of contemporary concern: wellbeing. The concern is both academic in that there has been a great deal of recent research in this field but there is also substantial interest from policy makers and practitioners. The book sets out very well the theoretical framework, the link to research and the relevance for educational practitioners. The author rightly points out that there has been some important recent developments into research on child wellbeing. The book is very comprehensive in scope, covering a wide range of issues (sustainability, aesthetics, ethics etc.). I would highly recommend to publish this text.


    Peter Aggleton, University of New South Wales, Australia

    Recent years have seen a rapid growth of interest in issues of wellbeing, health and ‘happiness’ as they relate to and impact on learning and teaching in schools. Because of this, a volume such as this is, in principle, very much to be welcomed. I particularly liked the rationale provided for the book and its interest in efforts to ensure young people’s lives are more fulfilling and meaningful. Achieving a balance between individual flourishing and wider societal ambitions is always challenging, but is something worth aiming for and struggling over. I also like the book’s structure and the inclusion of philosophical, policy, professional and practice perspectives.