|Pastoral care is of great importance at Eltham College and it is an aspect of the school that was praised by the Inspectors at the last inspection.
Eltham College has long had a reputation for excellent pastoral care. Our Christian foundation, the size of the school and the quality of staff has meant that we have always rightly placed a strong premium on valuing and supporting boys as individuals. We firmly believe that pastoral care is essential to the well-being of our pupils, and that a successful pastoral system not only helps to ensure that pupils are happy in their school environment but also is a crucial support to our academic system. Success and enjoyment at school can come only if pupils feel supported and that an interest is being shown in their overall development, not just their results.
The pastoral structure at Eltham College is designed to provide every pupil with support, help and guidance at a variety of levels.
In the Senior School, the Deputy Head is head of all pastoral care and he works closely with a team of Heads of Section as well as the School Nurse, who all meet regularly. Each pupil is assigned to a small form group and the Tutor is the first person a pupil can turn to for advice. The Heads of Section support both the Tutors and the academic and pastoral welfare of the pupils. For obvious reasons the academic and pastoral sides to school can never be divorced - difficulties and worries in one side are invariable reflected in the other.
Alongside this nucleus of daily oversight and help, the School Nurse is available for all pupils at any time. She is helped by an assistant in both the Junior and Senior School and a qualified nurse in the Junior School. The school nurses are able to offer advice, reassurance and a confidential ear if pupils are worried. Where appropriate, the nurse is able to access the various outside agencies as required. The Chaplain also offers support where appropriate and there is a trained, professional counsellor for pupils to see in confidence if they wish (pupils are allocated 30 minute sessions by the school nurse).
All pupils progress through a programme of PSHE during their time at Eltham College which is designed to help students discuss many of the issues surrounding growing up as a teenager, often with outside visiting experts. Our Well-being programme we believe will have a significant impact on the students' ability to become more emotionally literate and mentally resilient.
The person in the pastoral structure with whom pupils will have most contact is their Tutor. Pupils meet their Tutor twice daily, at morning and afternoon registration, and there is an extended Tutor period twice a week. Of course contact can occur at other times too, as the need arises. Most tutors in the Lower School also have a weekly well-being lesson with their Tutees. Tutors are selected carefully and training and support is given to them by Heads of Section and the Deputy Head.
Sanctions are also an important aspect of pastoral care and there is a clear set of processes in this area which are available to view in the Parents section of this website. Pupils also have a copy of the School Rules in their calendars and in their Form Rooms. We always try to ensure that parents are informed of any disciplinary action that is being taken and are made aware of why we have acted in a particular way.
Well-being is designed to support pastoral care at the school. A copy of the syllabuses for Years 7-11 can be found on the Well-being page and the taught courses are supplemented by a range of visiting speakers talking about cyber safety, drugs, alcohol or driving safety, for example. There are also information evenings organised for parents on a variety of topics.
The Governors and Staff of Eltham College are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, and to the principles that lie behind keeping children safe in education.
The Headmaster wrote to parents last year about the growing pressures that society places on adolescent boys and the Governors have approved plans to create a new Well-Being Centre to replace the much loved, but slightly dated White House. This will provide purpose-built modern medical, counselling and SEN facilities. The heartbeat of this new building will continue to be our Nurse, Cheryl Cartwright and her assistant Terri Cunningham. Mr Houghton and the Reverend Swaffield will continue as the College’s Chaplains and further support, where needed, will be provided by the School Counsellor Ms Louise Stratford and Mr Cooper, the Deputy Head. Mrs Frankli, the Head of Well-being, will provide a systematic programme of advice and guidance for all year groups to help boys navigate through the increasing challenges of adolescence.
Eltham College is committed to ensuring that students with special educational needs are fully integrated and looked after during their time here and the Head of SEN, Mrs Diana Rabot, oversees that SEN support is fully embedded in the life of the school.
As a College, we remain firmly committed to ensuring that each individual is given every support that they need and that no one is lost in the crowd. Strengthening the support and care we provide in school to the pupils here at Eltham College and working in partnership with you is core to our aim in developing those well-rounded and confident young people.