This past year, Belmont Hill created a new position — Director of Health and Wellness. Ms. Rupley, the new director, has begun teaching weekly health classes to students in Forms I-IV. Each Fourth Former will attend a weekly health class for one season. Ms. Rupley, a veteran health and wellness educator, hopes these classes will improve the overall well-being of the student body.
The class will focus on important topics which include mental health, mindfulness, and issues that are relevant to fourth formers. This is an entirely new program at Belmont Hill. Previous programming was sparse, including the Second Form health class (sex education) and periodic meetings with Will Slotnick in Form III (drugs, alcohol, and importance of sleep). As a result, Ms. Rupley has the opportunity to significantly increase student exposure to health-related topics. In the first three weeks of the program, students have learned a lot about mental health issues, which affect one in five people in America. Videos about Dan Harris, an ABC news anchor who had a panic attack on live television, conversations about mindfulness, and clips of Michael Phelps talking about his battle with depression have emphasized the importance of mindfulness and seeking aid. Later in the course, students will learn about health issues that pertain to fifteen to seventeen-year-olds, which include safe driving habits among other topics.
This class is a vital addition to the Belmont Hill curriculum, giving students more information about issues that they will encounter now and through their lives. Hopefully, the Form IV class, along with the other parts of the health and wellness program, will encourage students who face such challenges (or who have friends or family contending with them) to each out for guidance and support.