We believe that a good school makes the well-being, safety and confidence of every child a top priority and that our school should encourage tolerance, understanding and a sense of community. The pastoral care of our pupils is of the utmost importance to us. There is no doubt that children learn well in a safe and comfortable environment and we encourage a sense of everyone looking out for each other. We are a small school on a small site and this means that adults and pupils see a great deal of each other throughout the school day.
Before making the final decision to join the school, pupils are invited to spend some time shadowing their peer group during a typical school day. Those pupils already at the school take part in a 'step up day' to ease the transition to the next year. This is particularly important for those moving between the Pre-Prep and Prep Schools.
All pupils are assigned a form teacher who oversees daily registration and other administrative tasks. In the Pre-Prep and in Years 3 and 4, the form teacher is likely to teach their own form for a considerable amount of time during the week. The form teacher will be an important contact for parents and also delivers much of the school's Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) programme.
As the children progress up the school they are taught more by subject specialists. As a result, all children in the Prep School are assigned to a vertically organised tutor group to assist further with any pastoral issues that may arise. All academic members of staff and some support staff in the Prep School have a tutor group, which typically contains ten pupils, boys and girls, ranging in age from Year 3 to Year 8. This helps to counteract the boundaries that can exist between the chronological form groups and ensures that the senior pupils are actively engaged in caring for the younger members of the school. The tutor is another important contact for parents and another adult the pupils will get to know well. Tutor groups usually meet for 40 minutes each Wednesday afternoon.
Sanctions and Rewards
There is a clear system of rewards and sanctions to ensure that boundaries are defined from the outset. This helps to encourage positive behaviour and prevent that which is unacceptable. All staff use positive reinforcement where possible. The reward system is based upon a house point system, in which pupils can be awarded positive points for good work and conduct. In addition, teachers may also award 'Gold Seals' for particularly good effort and others may be nominated for a 'Headmaster's Commendation' where the pupil's input, or a particular piece of work, is thought to be exceptional.
Pupils' behaviour is monitored closely by the Headmaster and Deputy Head Pastoral through a negative house point system. Pupils who repeatedly receive negative points are put on report to monitor the causes of any problems and to help rectify any issues. Parents are invited in to discuss concerns at an appropriate moment so that they can work in partnership with the school.
The Headmaster meets regularly with the senior pupils in the school and members of the School Council, which consists of pupil representatives from each Year group in the Prep School. The School Council enables the views of all pupils to be heard.
Anti-bullying and Safeguarding
The school regularly reviews its anti-bullying policy and Safeguarding (Child Protection) procedures in conjunction with external agencies with which the school has excellent links. The Deputy Head Pastoral is the nominated person in charge of Child Protection. All staff receive regular Child Protection training and the school operates safer recruitment procedures when hiring new staff.
Please see the Policies section to view the Anti-bullying and Safeguarding policies.