Pastoral Care

Care and well-being of pupils

Care and welfare of pupils is a high priority at independent schools

 In each school, Guidance and Pastoral Care teams are responsible for pupils' wellbeing and they dedicate time, energy and expertise to encouraging and advising pupils. Each school has its own pastoral care aims that describe how pupils will be supported and nurtured. Broadly speaking, pupils are encouraged to give of their best, to support one another and to grow in confidence. While the aims will differ from school to school, they are likely to address some or all of the following:

  • providing an environment in which pupils feel comfortable, safe and secure in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect
  • encouraging positive interaction between pupils
  • providing the conditions where pupils can develop abilities, skills and talents
  • providing activities appropriate to age and stage that encourage each individual pupil to develop socially and culturally
  • developing pupils' responsibility - for themselves and others

Pastoral Care

Day schools

In day schools, there are two common ways in which the work of the Guidance and Pastoral Care teams are structured. In some schools, Guidance staff are responsible for the pupils in a specific year group which means that a pupil's Guidance tutor will change each year. In other schools, pupils keep the same Guidance tutor throughout the duration of their school life and any brothers and sisters are assigned the same Guidance tutor. As approaches differ from school to school, please check how the system operates in the schools that you choose to visit.

Boarding schools

In boarding schools, Guidance staff comprise House Parents and Assistant House Parents as well as Teaching staff. Usually, within each house, the House Parents have overall responsibility for pupils' care and welfare, with support from Assistant House Parents. Boarding pupils are also allocated a Tutor who is present each evening, should their help be required.

In boarding schools, the House System is central to pupil life. A House is so much more than the place where a pupil sleeps. It represents their life outside the academic side of the school - a home from home, a place of safety and security, a place of fun and camaraderie. Great importance is attached to the creation of a friendly, close-knit community in which young people can settle, make firm friendships, feel at home and thrive. In some boarding schools, houses include pupils from each year group while at other schools, the houses are home to pupils from just one year group. There are many benefits to both approaches. Typically, pupils are very loyal to their House and popular features of House life often include inter-house competitions, outings and social events. 

Pastoral Care