PolyU will launch a two-year “Teachers Wellness MED Program” funded through a generous donation from Lee Hysan Foundation, a strategic partner and sponsor of the University, with the provision of a comprehensive wellness programme for 600 secondary school teachers.
Heavy teaching and administrative workloads, education reforms, preparation for peer observation or external school reviews, pursuit of further education, and more, have imposed a great burden on teachers that could adversely affect their physical and mental health, and consequently their work performance. On the other hand, appropriate support and help from schools and the government is limited. There is an urgent need to develop a holistic health programme to help improve teachers’ physical and mental wellbeing.
As a matter of fact, the challenges and stress that teachers face at different stages of life and career development are varied, resulting in various levels of physical and mental health problems. A multi-disciplinary team led by Prof. Hector Tsang, Head of PolyU’s Department of Rehabilitation Sciences and Chair Professor of Rehabilitation Sciences and Cally Kwong Mei Wan Professor in Psychosocial Health, aims to use a life-span approach to provide holistic and sustainable care to teachers. The Teachers Wellness MED Program (with “MED” standing for “mental health, exercise and diet”) will be tailor-made to meet teachers’ various needs at different life and career development stages. The programme is “holistic” in the sense that it embraces three aspects, namely psychosocial wellness, nutrition, and physical health. Through a series of lectures and interactive workshops, and individual consultations, teachers will acquire knowledge and self-administered techniques on these three aspects.