Associate Professor Stacey Waters

Director – Child Health Promotion Research Centre, Edith Cowan University, WA


Positive Schools Perth - Main Stage Talk Day Two


About Stacey

Associate Professor Stacey Waters was recently appointed to the position of Head of Edith Cowan University’s Child Health Promotion Research Centre (CHPRC) in Perth, Western Australia.  She has a strong track record in health promotion intervention research focusing on bullying prevention, mental health promotion, road safety and injury control and social skill development in children and adolescents.  Her recent PhD research aimed to investigate the active components of a school’s environment, or ecology, which influence the extent to which young people feel connected to their school and the role this plays in promoting mental health.  Stacey has won over $1million in competitive research funding and has published her PhD research widely in the scientific literature.  She has also provided extensive expert consultation for Government and non-Government organisations preparing formative intervention designs and program evaluations.  Stacey is passionate about the promotion of child and adolescent health and wellbeing and is committed to supporting health professionals in Western Australia to implement evidence-based best practice in promoting health and wellbeing for this vulnerable target group.

Positive Schools are Connected Schools

Creating a positive connection to school has been described as the single most important protective factor for anti-social and health compromising behaviours of children and young people.  A recent Western Australian study has found that students who are highly connected to school have better mental health outcomes including reduced conduct problems, emotional problems and peer relationship difficulties as well as improved pro-social skills.  This presentation will explore the characteristics of Australian schools which help young people feel connected to their school and enhance their mental health.  It offers advice for school policy makers and practitioners to focus on the structural, functional and built environment characteristics of their school which, in themselves, encourage the development of school connectedness and mental health over and above what is taught in the classroom or across the school community.