The Royal Belfast Academical Institution

Wellbeing / PERMA

Wellbeing / PERMA

Well-being at R.B.A.I.

At RBAI we prioritise the well-being of our pupils. The aim is to arm them with the knowledge to allow them to monitor their own well-being, but also to provide a framework that they can follow to improve their life experiences.

We are doing this by teaching our pupils about the three strands of our well-being framework

  1. PERMA
  2. Self-awareness
  3. Mental Health

Each strand will be covered in the PD programme explicitly and should be promoted through all areas of the school. PERMA is the acronym created by Dr Martin Seligman to promote positive psychology and he is a world leader in this field. Self-awareness and Mental Health will encourage our pupils to be introspective. This will be led on a three-year cycle in line with the findings of the University of Melbourne Well-being Profiler.

PERMA Definitions


It is important that we have clear definitions for each strand of PERMA which relate to the needs of the pupils in our school. The main theory is that each stakeholder identifies what works for them and then they use this repeatedly to promote the given response. PERMA refers to

Positive Emotions





Our journey

The journey began with the Principal embarking on a Churchill Fellowship. This prestigious award took her to Australia to work with other pioneering schools in the field of Well-being and the University of Melbourne. On her return, Mr Allen was appointed Senior Teacher in charge of Pupil Well-being. Mr Allen worked with the University of Melbourne to conduct their Well-being Profiler with our pupils. This gave us an insight into 44 different areas of our pupils lives that directly relate to well-being. This knowledge allowed us to create bespoke lessons to target the findings of the profiler. On completion of the second Profiler were able to compare results, which appeared to show an improvement in the well-being of pupils at RBAI.

This led Mr Allen to liaise with QUB in their work with well-being. The Principal then sanctioned a co-produced PhD project between RBAI and QUB. This project explored the link between well-being and physical activity and culminated in the development of the REACT programme. The PE department now implement this programme, as one aspect of how RBAI promotes positive well-being in our pupils. In addition, to the academic study and development of well-being we have also been improving our outdoor spaces with extra seating available to pupils, outdoor equipment for pupils to use during break and lunch and an outdoor classroom.

This work is ongoing with Mr Allen soon to conduct the third Well-being Profiler which will allow us to continue to identify and meet the needs of RBAI pupils.

25 2022
Years 8 & 10 Report Deadline
26 2022
KS1 Sports Day
31 2022
Scouts DoE Year 11 Silver/Year 10 Bronze
31 2022
Scouts DoE Year 10 Bronze Qualifying
College Square East, Belfast, Co. Antrim, BT1 6DL
Tel: 028 90 240461
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