Brighton College in the UK is another school seeking the beneficial effects of meditation for its students. Starting in September, all teachers will be issued “emergency meditation kits” in order to be able to restore classroom order. The kit will be composed of videos, audio recordings and background information on conducting three-minute meditation sessions to calm boisterous or rowdy students.
These kits are the result of a global fact-finding mission conducted by Brighton College headmaster, Richard Cairns. Cairns, whom Tatler named 2012’s public school headmaster of the year, took a team of teachers to visit various schools in Finland, California and Singapore, in order to observe their educational best practices and then implement them at Brighton College.
The school’s director of creative learning, Thomas Godber, strongly supports the initiative to use meditation in the classroom.
“Simple mindfulness techniques like asking children to feel themselves sitting in the chair, feel their feet and the sensation of their socks and shoes on their feet – this will allow them to concentrate and feel more relaxed,” he said to the Telegraph in an interview.
Brighton College was named as one of the most expensive boarding schools with tuition coming out to 40,000 GBP/year per student; it has also been the recipient of several awards, including being named as the “Independent School of the Year 2011-12” by The Sunday Times and “The Most Forward Thinking School in Britain” from The Week.
Brighton College offers nursery, prep and college educational programs. They claim that their academic results are consistently the best in Sussex and among the best in England. In addition to the original school in the UK, they also have schools in Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, and Bangkok. This means that their meditation techniques will be used on children of all ages and from varying ethnic backgrounds.
In the US, the Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore, Maryland, has replaced detention for their students with meditation.
In Canada, the University of Ottawa in Ontario has made meditation mandatory for students of their medical school.
Universities in China have also implemented yoga initiatives to bolster the mental health of their students.