The aim of a pastoral care system within a school is to support the physical and emotional wellbeing of its pupils, making sure they are healthy, happy, and thriving academically. One would argue that pastoral care provides a base for a superior education. It’s essentially an opportunity for teachers to really make a personal difference amongst their students. I have teamed up with a sixth form college in Hampshire to explore the importance of pastoral care in further detail below.
Children spend the majority of their time in schools, so it’s important that their teachers and other staff members take care of them on a personal level, as well as on an academic level. They should be protected against things like bullying, peer pressure, mental health issues, and problems at home, to name but a few. After all, if a child is struggling with one aspect of their life, the other will likely suffer too. There are usually various policies and procedures in place to ensure all staff are following the same regulations when it comes to caring for the students.
One of the main pastoral carers within a school is a child’s form tutor, as they see each other at least once a day. They act as a link between the school and the child’s home, keeping parents updated on any issues that might arise and how they are being dealt with.
However, pastoral care isn’t just about the reaction to a problem. It’s also about promoting community spirit, to avoid those problems in the first place. Good quality pastoral care engages each and every pupil. House systems are often established for this very reason, because they promote teamwork, good behaviour, respect for one another, and diligence. School councils are another popular aspect of pastoral care because they give students an opportunity to put forward their own opinions and suggestions on how to improve their overall experience at the school.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post