Role of the Form Tutor
Pastoral care of our pupils is initially in the hands of their Form Tutor. Teachers who specialise in the Primary/Secondary transfer are in charge of the first year forms (Year 7) and are responsible for the settling down and integration process.
In year 8 (second year), they hand over to another member of staff who will, usually, remain with that form until at least the end of Year 11 (fifth year), giving continuity and depth of knowledge. The Sixth Form is divided into smaller units of mixed disciplines. Each unit of 20-25 students has its own tutor. Throughout the school, form tutors are responsible for checking on the progress and behaviour of their form members, with only outstanding individual problems referred to the Heads of Year, Deputy Heads or Headteacher as appropriate. We encourage parents to get in touch with us to discuss any matters of concern at an early stage. We in turn will always consult parents if the need arises. A full written report on each student’s progress is sent home once a year, usually following school examinations. We also provide parents with assessment grades at the end of each term based on attainment and effort in each subject taken. From the outset, pupils are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning and to set targets for improvement. At Key Stage 4 and in the Sixth Form, they will be aiming to equal or better target grades for their examination subjects.
A copy of our school rules is openly displayed in every form room. Rules are fair and firm, and designed for the safety and well being of the whole school community. We expect our pupils to behave in a considerate manner, which brings credit to themselves and the school. Our system of sanctions, for dealing with breaches of discipline, includes detention at lunchtime, and after school on a weekly basis (when parents are informed in advance). For particularly serious offences, temporary suspension may have to be imposed. Permanent exclusion from school lies within the jurisdiction of the Governors.
Personal, Social and Health Education
Through the use of form periods and specialised classes we offer guidance in all aspects of our pupils’ Personal Development, physical, emotional and social. We try to encourage an understanding of how present choices and future lifestyle will influence their level of wellbeing, happiness and health.
Topics such as personal hygiene, diet, the consequences of smoking, the use and abuse of alcohol and drugs, adolescence and relationships with the opposite sex, are covered at times appropriate to the needs and maturity of the pupils. Sex education, for example, begins with much factual material being taught in the first year, in context with other biological and health-related studies. More difficult topics and questions of responsibility are considered higher up the school. Copies of the detailed syllabus are available from the Headteacher on request.