Student Wellbeing is at the heart of everything we do at VISS.

As educators we understand that unless students feel safe, comfortable and happy it is very difficult for any meaningful learning to take place. As such, student wellbeing across the school is approached in a variety of ways to ensure the students can learn.

VISS WellbeingThe Wellbeing model is built on the VISS Values, the principles of Positive Education (PERMA), and particular focus on the 5 Ways to Wellbeing. The Behaviour management model is closely linked to all of these, with the setting of high expectations, a focus on building strong relationships between students, as well as between students and staff, and the use of restorative practices as a model for discipline and conflict resolution among students.

We believe that any success from our students can only be achieved through a three-way partnership of student, teachers and parents. For this reason, regular and open communication with parents, not just on academic issues, but also wellbeing related issues is a priority.

VISS Values in Action

Our school rules and expectations are framed by our VISS Values. We celebrate the successes of students in these five areas and school consequences are given when these values are not respected.

Striving for EXCELLENCEShown through always trying your best, in class, on the playground, in sports and all school activities.
Celebrating DIVERSITYShown through understanding and respecting all people of all ages, no matter their gender, race, nationality, religion or even taste in music.
Showing INTEGRITYShown through consistent positive behaviour no matter who is or isn’t watching.
Prioritising LEARNINGShown through an attitude that clearly indicates that learning is the most important aspect of school.
Valuing COMMUNITYShown through caring for all people in the VISS community and beyond, and doing all you can to ensure that those you come in contact with are comfortable and happy.

Positive Education

This is an internationally respected system based on the principles of Positive psychology. Although relatively new to education, the strong impact has been seen in schools across the world. The concepts of PERMA are used as a base for wellbeing lessons to build on both staff and student knowledge of their own wellbeing.

Structure of Wellbeing Teams

Students are very clear on the process of who they should speak to if they have any issue related to wellbeing, or even their academics, as this is often a source of stress and affects their wellbeing. There is a Head of Wellbeing in each of the sub schools who works with a team of other staff members. Students are encouraged to report any issues to any teacher they feel comfortable speaking to.

The School Psychologist/Counselor is an integral part of the Wellbeing Team across the school. They work alongside the Heads of Wellbeing, advising on Programs and initiatives as well as working on the Professional Development of staff on issues of Wellbeing for staff and students alike. The Counselor works one on one with students who need individual counseling or with small groups of students, depending on the situation. 

Child Protection and Safeguarding

United Arab Emirates (UAE) Federal law Number 3 of 2016, previously referred to as “Wadeema’s Law”, ensures that every child in the UAE, whether a resident or tourist, has the right to live and be safe, be educated, and be protected from neglect and all forms of abuse, whether physical, sexual, verbal, emotional or psychological.

At Victoria International School Sharjah (VISS), the health, safety and wellbeing of all our children is of paramount importance to every employee. Our children have the right to protection, regardless of age, gender, race, culture or disability.

Child protection is the responsibility of all staff and especially those working with children. The designated Senior Person for Child Protection at VISS is the Executive Principal and in his absence the relevant School Psychologist and Head Principal of Primary or Secondary is in charge of child protection/safeguarding matters. The Executive Principal will be assisted by Head of Primary and/or Head of secondary and members of the Child Protection Team (CPT).

Student Wellbeing Program and Assemblies

There is a structured Wellbeing program which runs fortnightly in the Secondary School, alternating with a fortnightly assembly which is run by students from a different Grade Level each fortnight. Each wellbeing session is made up of a 40-minute lesson where homegroup teachers and Grade Level Leaders and sometimes the help of the School Counselor work with students to cover different wellbeing areas according to the continuum of the Wellbeing Program. 

This covers areas of identity, resilience, self-management, dealing with stress and anxiety, just to name a few. The program is structured in such a way that it can accommodate an as needed session on any issues arising such as bullying, depending on the cohort and what is happening at the time. This program has been a valuable addition to the VISS Academic Program, allowing time for explicit teaching and learning in the area of wellbeing, highlighting it’s importance. 

Student Wellbeing in the Primary School takes on a more holistic approach and is a part of every classroom and teaching session. Activities such as meditation and Circle Time are used extensively to help students recognize and manage their own wellbeing.

Each grade level runs their own fortnightly Assembly and once a term a number of individual students are recognized for their excellent adherence of the VISS Values.

Student Leadership Program

Student Leadership is a strong component of the Wellbeing focus at VISS, allowing students to have a voice and lead on initiatives which showcase the variety of talents of our student body. The Student Representative Council (SRC) is managed by a member of staff but is very much student led by the School Captains (one boy and one girl from Grade 12) and the School Vice Captains (One boy and one girl from Grade 11). These 4 positions are selected by School Leadership after a rigorous selection process of written application followed by 2 rounds of interviews. The SRC is then formed by one student from each homegroup from Grade 4 to Grade 12. These students nominate themselves, write an application and speak to their homegroup and are voted for by their peers. 

In parallel our house system allows for students to be House Representatives in Grade 5 and Grade 9, and House Captains in Grade 11 and 12. These students also go through a rigorous application and interview process and are carefully selected by the House Co-coordinator in close consultation with relevant Grade Level Leaders

Students receive their badges at a specially dedicated Leadership assembly at the start of each year.

The SRC runs school events and is responsible for fundraising for and supporting our two Charity partners the Big Heart Foundation and the Fred Hollows Foundation. Events like A touch of Pink in October, and the Australia Day Sausage Sizzle in January are run entirely by the Student Council. (Can insert photos of SRC and house events here).

Camps and Activity Weeks

Another important aspect of student wellbeing is teambuilding and the emphasis on powerful bonds and relationships between students in each cohort. One of the ways this is achieved is through the camps and outdoor education initiatives.

Camps and sleepovers occur throughout the school at varying times of the year with a strong focus on the students learning about themselves and each other and strategies to help them manage these important relationships, but also allow the students to build some independence being away from home for a few days and having to rely on and take care of themselves.

In the secondary school, activity weeks are held towards the start and end of each year to help build the bonds early on in the year and celebrate them at the end of the year. 


We believe in the power of positive reinforcement and we always have something to celebrate as our students are always improving and achieving, and look forward to being recognized for their achievements.

This not only acknowledges student success but builds intrinsic motivation in our students to ensure they continue to strive for excellence.

Students are acknowledged in a variety of ways throughout the school year.

  • Achievements linked to the VISS Values, recorded on engage
  • VISS Values Awards once each term 
  • School records noted for Sporting events and awarded in assemblies
  • Students competing for the school in competitions ranging from sports to robotics to reading, are awarded and recognized during assemblies. 
  • Academic Awards at the start of each year to celebrate Academic Excellence from the previous year as well as award Honour Board Awards for the Graduating Class
  • Graduation – is one of the highlights of our Celebration calendar, something they look forward to throughout their school life at VISS