Sheffield City Council is calling on all education settings in the city to sign up to a Trauma Informed Schools Pledge as part of a drive to put inclusion at the heart of education.

This commitment has come at the end of a several year process of exploration in Sheffield, which included inviting Adoption UK to present at the South Yorkshire Futures ‘Festival of Education’ in 2019 and involving Yorkshire & Humber Adopter Voice in the planning stages.

The result is a city-wide strategy for embedding trauma-informed practice across all the region’s schools, supported by the Sheffield Inclusion Team and the local CAMHS service. So far, over 75 schools have accessed intensive trauma informed training.

However, the strategy goes beyond training alone. It lays out a framework for what a trauma-informed school would look like, considering the implications for both staff and students, and invites schools to embark on an ongoing cycle of training and development to create a trauma informed culture, emphasising the importance of schools and services working together.

Adoption UK is delighted to see the development of this co-ordinated, multi-agency approach to supporting some of the city’s most vulnerable children. While an individual teacher, or a single school can do much to change the trajectory of children who have experienced significant early life trauma, we know that being trauma informed is more than the efforts of an individual, a day of training, or a tick box exercise – it means changing a whole culture.

We wish Sheffield well as they embark on this journey.

Rebecca Brooks
Adoption UK's Education Policy Advisor
Author of 
The Trauma and Attachment Aware Classroom