To thrive in a school which is busy and demanding, students need the support of adults and of their peers.
The former occurs via the strong pastoral support system and by maintaining close links with parents; the latter arises from the ethos of the school and the expectation that students support and encourage one another and celebrate in individual or collective achievement.
We place much emphasis on the recognition of achievement and the identification of demanding but realistic learning targets. To these ends each student is guided and supported by his/ her subject tutors and form tutor. By Years 10 and 11, students devise individual learning plans to guide their studies to successful conclusions. Recognition also occurs via the student’s individual Progress File.
Pastoral care is based on a year system and the associated tutor groups. In each of the year groups 7-11, there are ten/twelve tutor groups with an average size of 24 and 25. The Group Tutor normally remains with the group for the five years of compulsory education. Thus, the welfare and the academic development of each individual student is closely monitored and guided by the Group Tutor and Head and Assistant Head of Year.
The school endeavours to keep parents informed of all matters relevant to the education or welfare of their sons or daughters. Information specific to individual students is normally communicated from the group tutor or Year staff, or from the relevant department for a subject related matter.
Additionally, the LEA provides an Educational Welfare Officer who maintains that personal contact which is so important at times of concern or difficulty. Her assistance is invaluable in supporting families and students at such times.
Students in Years 12 and 13 retain membership and contact with their Houses, but usually have a new group tutor for their time in the College. The strong support and guidance system remains and is one of the reasons for our high degree of success with students on post 16 courses.
Keen but friendly rivalry exists between Houses, and the regular Inter-House competitions for Sport, Music, Drama, etc., allow much opportunity for participation by students. The willingness and enthusiasm with which students represent their Houses are both heartening.