Strategic Attachment Lead Teacher
Helen Wallace is currently the Inclusion Manager at a very unique mainstream junior school with enhanced resourced provision in Derby City - a post she has held for nine years.
A qualified trainer in a holistic approach to understanding behaviour and intervention, she leads on promoting inclusion and positive educational opportunities for children who have experienced relational trauma and loss. These children may very easily be misunderstood, due to their behavioural and emotional needs, within a potentially overwhelming school environment. She also advocates on inclusion issues in inter-agency fora and is determined to encourage others to develop an environment where all children, irrespective of the challenges they pose, are recognised as individuals, each in need of unique consideration.
Helen’s approach is rooted in working with colleagues and families, to identify novel ways to overcome barriers which may impede a child's ability to settle and learn. She developed a whole-school approach based on the absolute importance of a child's need to feel safe and secure before anything else can be achieved. In steering the school to become an attachment aware school, the support to children and their families has improved. Using the attachment support model has achieved real improvements through greater understanding. The ongoing training and guidance for staff is a vital element of its success.
Helen provides support for the transition of the most vulnerable children into their secondary schools. Developing outstanding working relationships with secondary school colleagues is key to ensuring that transition is as smooth and successful as possible.
Helen is a Senior Leader in Education (SLE) and she works with the local teaching alliance to provide training, information, and support sessions about trauma and attachment. She also works alongside health, education and care colleagues across Derby City to reflect and plan on effective provision for vulnerable groups of children.
Helen experiences the worry, excitement, upset, enlightenment, confusion, pride, frustration and sheer satisfaction that working with children provides. She considers it a privilege to experience, first-hand, the positive difference that attachment support can make.