United Kingdom

The role of Educational Psychology in uniting school communities for a sustainable world

Invited Programme: “Mental health and wellbeing of education professionals following COVID-19: Evidence from the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia and the UK”
Convenor: Olympia Palikara
Format: Invited Symposium
Participants: Hans Reijnierse, Olympia Palikara, Sara Bahia, Mojca Juriševič



What will be covered and why:  The COVID-19 pandemic had wide ranging effects on many peoples’ working lives. This, of course, included education professionals, with many having to quickly adapt their practices and to continue to support children, families, and school communities during challenging and uncertain times.

Emerging literature has already highlighted some aspects of the effect of COVID-19 on the mental health and wellbeing of various groups of professionals, including teachers, school psychologists and other educational professionals. However, as we have now entered the recovery phase of COVID-19, little consideration has been given on the current state of education professionals’ mental health and well-being as well as on the resources that they draw on to cope during this new phase, including the importance of self-care. The proposed symposium aims to address this gap in our current knowledge by presenting recent empirical data from the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, and the UK.

Research/ Practical implications:  Drawing on our empirical research with teachers, school psychologists and other education professionals across four European countries, we will provide a timely account and discussion on the support needs and the resources that we need to develop in order to effectively support the mental health needs of educational professionals during the recovery phase from COVID-19 and in the phase of any related crisis in the future.

Overall conclusions: Our findings not highlight the mental health of education professionals following COVID-19 pandemic but urge for the development of evidence-based resources to support them now and in the phase of any future crisis in the future

Our proposed symposium will be of relevance to both academic and practitioner audiences.

Keywords: mental health; COVID-19; education professionals