Well-Being of Managers in leading the Green and Digital Transitions

Vocational Education and Training (VET) school managers are leaders who provide a purpose and a direction to their staff and to the institutions they manage. They are responsible for daily organisational and administrative issues that often mean additional pressure and stress.
The pandemic exposed many of the already existing inequalities that cut across our education system, and new doors for change and a renewed emphasis of tackling inequality and repositioning well-being as a core principle in how education is practiced and provided have been opened.

Within the European Union (EU), around 60% of VET schools’ students report feeling tense whilst studying for tests 1. The effects of assessment practices that are detrimental to well-being can be carried through into adulthood, reducing individuals’ willingness to engage in learning later in life.
When searching for information about well-being, there are many sources of information providing data about the role of managers in improving well-being at the workplace and on their staff, and on it Well-Being of Managers in leading the Green & Digital Transitions impact on employees’ mental health. There are also a number of strategies and tools that are recommended by the European Commission (EC) to be implemented by managers in schools, but there are not many resources focused specifically on managers’ well-being, which must also be promoted given its relevance to the quality of the work environment, for preventing stress and for successfully overcoming daily challenges.

The European Education Area addresses the topic of well-being in schools with two initiatives that support EU countries to develop the “whole-system, whole-school approach”: Pathways to School Success Council Recommendation (November 2022),2 and Well-being at school3. This approach aims at creating a positive learning environment for all students and teachers, focusing on universal strategies addressing children and students at risk of (or that already are) experiencing mental health issues, and on the mental health and well- being of teachers and staff.

Furthermore, the European Education Area also provides a series of factsheets4 addressing relevant topics connected to well-being (including one on well-being on the digital era, and another one focused on promoting teachers’ well-being), but no factsheet specifically dedicated to managers.

Aware of the importance of this topic for its Members, the European Forum of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (EfVET) addressed it during dedicated activities carried out during its last two International Conferences (in 2022 and 2023), which results are the baseline for this Position Paper.

Position Paper WellBeing Managers (final)

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