Going global with the Happy Schools framework: supporting holistic school happiness to improve teaching, learning and well-being

Toolkits & Guides
UNESCO Office Bangkok
27 p.

This paper outlines the vision for scaling up the Happy Schools Project (HSP) globally. It begins with lessons learned from the Asia-Pacific Happy Schools Framework pilot implementation and how to develop a global initiative to position happiness as a major lever to improve K-12 learning experiences. Furthermore, it explores the global reality of the complex correlation between well-being and academic achievement, calling for rigorous research that explores transformative pedagogy and the impact of whole-school happiness on the learning experiences of students in K-12 schools.The scale-up of the project begins by emphasizing the link between happiness and better learning by focusing on well-being, engagement, and sense of belonging at school, the HSP helps foster a lifelong love of learning. The specific purpose of this paper is to position school happiness as an important enabler for ensuring that all learners complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes by 2030 (Sustainable Development Goal Target 4.1). In addition, this paper explores several global initiatives aimed at student wellbeing and social-emotional learning in national policy. Finally, this paper concludes by identifying next steps for the scale-up of this initiative.