Pastoral Care


SUPPORTING OUR STUDENTS


At Elizabeth College we believe every student should enjoy and make the very most of their learning in the classroom, but should also be actively encouraged to find their niche beyond the curriculum. A good education will encourage children to take risks, to participate in new activities and to be open to new ideas. They should leave with the confidence and skills to play leading roles in society.

From when children start at Elizabeth College in the Junior School, right through to when they leave us after Sixth Form, we aim:

  • To create a caring environment where students are valued for who they are, not just for what they currently contribute;
  • To ensure every student has the self-confidence to tackle both academic and personal challenges;
  • To provide students with opportunities for involvement, leadership and service;
  • To encourage students to exercise individual and social responsibility;
  • To ensure that each student has access to personal, vocational and academic guidance and support, where necessary; and
  • To establish and maintain excellent communication with every parent, so that together we can help prepare students for adult life.
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RESPONSIBILITY 


Pastoral care is the responsibility of the whole school community. The way we talk, interact and teach all contribute to the quality of our care. To ensure all of our students are appropriately supported we have structures in place to make sure everyone in our community thrives. For our students from 2 ½  to 18 years old, there is regular communication with parents. Across all year groups contact books and the use of the student diary is paramount. Email, phone calls and the occasional meeting are also encouraged. In addition to the regular parents’ evenings, there are pastoral information evenings to ensure the school is working with parents on issues of pastoral care and academic progress.

Pastoral tracking between the three school sites at Elizabeth College (Acorn House, Beechwood and the Upper School) ensures that the often difficult transition phases for students are as smooth as possible. In addition, there is a Welfare Management Team that includes the Child Protection Officers from the Junior and Upper Schools.

For our younger children class teachers are the first point of contact for parents and students. Class teachers are in turn supported by the Deputy Headteacher (Pastoral), who has overall responsibility for the well-being of the students at Elizabeth College Junior School, while the Headteacher is kept informed of all Pastoral matters.

As students move up through the school their Tutor becomes responsible for the pastoral and academic well-being of their Tutees. Heads of Year, with the support of the Assistant Principal (Pastoral), oversee a team of tutors. Tutors and Heads of Year are encouraged to be in contact with parents on a regular basis.

The School Nurse and the College Chaplain visit weekly and provide additional support to all of our students and staff.

PSHE AND LIFE SKILLS


Elizabeth College is committed to providing a holistic education for all our students and see our academic and pastoral work as interrelated and complementary. We believe it is vital that, alongside achieving their academic potential, our students learn skills and have experiences that enable them to thrive and flourish during the school day, away from school and in the years beyond Elizabeth College.

Our community wide emphasis on wellbeing, together with age appropriate PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) lessons equips our students to do this.

The pastoral support system is enhanced by a rich and varied programme of assemblies that sees visiting speakers from charities and church groups meeting the pupils on a regular basis. The PSHE programme of study also makes students aware of outside agencies that provide support to pupils as they tackle the challenges of growing up.

As part of the Pastoral Care provision, all students at Elizabeth College study our PSHE course in years 7 and 8. The ideas and ethos of ‘life skills’ are then developed throughout their time at College, both in lessons and assemblies. In years 9 to 11, PSHE is delivered through ‘Collapsed Curriculum Days’.

In Year 7, the course is based around James Shone’s ideas of ‘I can and I am’ with the goal of pupils leaving school with a ‘developed sense of self-belief’ in who they are and what they can do. There is an increasing focus on the ideas of resilience, growth mindset, an understanding of multiple intelligences and character traits such as grit, curiosity, zest, social intelligence, gratitude, optimism and compassion. We are also using some of the resources of the Jubilee Centre to educate ‘character’, with the idea that character is ‘taught as well as caught’. The three character virtues (Civic, Moral and Performance) will increasingly provide focus throughout the life skills course.

PSHE is intended to enable individuals to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life. It is intended to equip students with the tools needed to lead successful and healthy lives, both personally and in their chosen career. Various outside speakers contribute to the PSHE curriculum and the course deals with a wide range of themes: digital ethics and safe internet use, relationships, alcohol and smoking, finance, relationships, nutrition, morality, first aid, diversity, politics, the justice system, employment and sexual health throughout their time at the school.