Become a CHAT school
The CHAT process adapts to the diversity of school cultures in metropolitan and regional areas across all systems and sectors; public, Catholic and Independent. It enables schools to identify needs, develop actions and implement changes, ensuring they are relevant and grounded in the ethos of the school and the needs of the local community. At the outset, approval and endorsement must be sought from the school administration (executive) in order to effectively and fully implement the CHAT model. This ensures full implementation and longevity of this holistic model.
Once approval is gained, support is provided in the form of funding, ongoing professional advice and visits to key personnel at the school. This ‘one-on-one' consultation is crucial in facilitating full development of initiatives identified by the school and it also empowers key staff to foster the sustainability of CHAT and health promotion initiatives in the school context.
The benefits of CHAT for staff, students, schools and communities include:
positive changes in the school culture
improved student participation, engagement and attendance
improved health behaviours and personal capabilities
improved partnerships with parents
a set of management principles that build human, organisational and social capital within schools
opportunities for, and increased participation in, professional learning for school staff
development of guidelines
more holistic approaches that focus on cognitive skills and changes to the social environment which have a positive impact on students’ mental health, smoking and alcohol intake
a method for formalising processes and increasing collaboration with other schools and services.
What schools say about CHAT
"The resources provided by SDERA through CHAT have assisted us in ensuring the health program at school can be developed over time. Being provided with financial support has enabled the school to purchase additional resources and has provided teacher relief funds to release teachers from the classroom to work on the development and implementation of the program at the school. ‘Getting it Together: A whole school approach to drug education has been a fantastic resource to develop school drug education guidelines and the support from SDERA staff has been fantastic." Geographe Primary School.
"As a CHAT School we recognise the importance of community involvement and so we endeavour to foster and maintain partnerships with industry, business and agencies, as well as the local community and parent groups. CHAT has enabled us to identify priorities after running a whole school review of current programs and processes with all stakeholders such as the school chaplain, class teachers, deputies and school psychologists. We now have a clearer way forward." Ocean Reef Senior High School.