Positive School Climate

A positive learning and teaching environment is essential if students are to succeed in school. A positive school climate exists when all members of the school community:

  • feel safe, included and accepted
  • actively promote positive behaviours and interactions.

Principles of equity and inclusive education must be embedded in the learning environment to support a positive school climate and a culture of mutual respect.

Resources for a positive school climate

See ideas and resources below for creating a positive school climate:

  • Use the Kids Have Stress Too! program for children in Kindergarten to grade 9 from the Psychology Foundation of Canada. This program promotes positive social-emotional development and effective stress management. The program includes:
    • Kids Have Stress Too! For grades 1-3
    • Stress Lessons for grades 4-6
    • Stress Lessons: From Stressed Out to Chilled Out  for grades 7-9
  • Get fact sheets for children, parents and professionals from PREVNet, a Canadian network of researchers and national organizations working to prevent bullying.

  • Use Stepping Stones to identify and respond to youth`s needs at each stage of their development.  These tools are from the Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services for youth ages 12 to 25 years old.  

  • Challenge all school staff to greet students by name.

  • Encourage teachers and other school staff to build relationships with students who are experiencing academic or personal issues.

  • Consider implementing organizational change, developing and evaluating policies.  Advocate for changes within school to create a positive school climate.
  • Read Promoting a Positive School Climate.  
  • Provide students with the academic, emotional and social skills necessary to be actively engaged in school.
  • Provide opportunities for students of all achievement levels to interact with one another and develop friendships, promote teamwork and lessen hierarchical divisions between older and younger students.  
  • Create trusting and caring relationships that promote open communication among administrators, teachers, staff, students, families and communities
  • Map or plot “hot spots” to identify bullying in the playground and in the school
  • Develop recess kits with equipment such as balls and skipping ropes
  • Make kindness pledges

Check these resources:

  • Kids Help Phone provides information for children, youth and helping adults. Call Kids Help Phone at 1-800-668-6868.

Coordinate activities with: 


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