Date of Submission
Doctor of Education
External change agent, Organizational change, Change framework, Adaptive leadership, Mental health, Prevention.
With the growing societal, personal, and financial costs related to unaddressed mental health issues (Smetanin et al., 2011), the World Health Organization [WHO] (2004) urges stakeholders to start with preventative work. The premise is to focus upstream of the plethora of potential consequences and to address these issues before they become problematic. The WHO (2004) further suggests starting with children and youth, which are, for the most part, in schools. While this seems a logical starting place, research suggests that it is essential to be well in order to teach others to be well (Acton & Glasgow, 2015; Ontario Principals’ Council, 2017; Roffey, 2012). Unfortunately, Smetanin et al. (2011) estimate that one in every five Canadian is affected by mental health challenges each year. It is thus assumed that those who are tasked with supporting student resiliency building may also be struggling, which may impact school leaders and staff work performance, their relationships with colleagues and students, and even affect students’ grades and satisfaction with school (Koenig, Rodger, & Specht, 2017; Pollock, 2016). As such, to address this issue, this Organizational Improvement Plan proposes to focus on this audience. However, as the change leader is external to the organization, change is enacted through influence and at arm's length. Therefore, the problem of practice considers how a consultant can support these stakeholders towards promoting positive professional mental health practices at school through various processes and frameworks.
Fortier, A. (2019). One Size Does Not Fit All: An External Leader’s Process Towards Supporting Positive Mental Health in Schools. The Organizational Improvement Plan at Western University, 77. Retrieved from https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/oip/77