For children to learn effectively, they need to feel secure
and comfortable in their surroundings. They need to know that there are adults
to whom they can turn when they feel like talking about a problem and they need
to be confident that when they do share a concern, it will be dealt with. For
these reasons we make it our priority to provide excellent pastoral care within
the Junior School.
The Junior School accepts girls from the age of three into
our Little Acorns pre-reception class. All our classes from Little Acorns
through to Year 2 are called Acorns.
In the Acorns classes, the children are taught and cared for
by their class teacher. These staff are the first point of contact for the
girls and also for parents should there be any concerns.
In the Juniors our forms are vertically grouped, which means
that they are created from a combination of Years 3, 4, 5 and 6. Each form has
a Form Tutor who is the first point of contact. The forms meet for registration
at the beginning and end of the day, and also organise their own assemblies
once a term. The girls do not remain in their forms for teaching; they are
taught in their year groups.
This vertical grouping enables the girls to widen their
friendship pool by mixing with girls of different ages. It also provides the
older pupils with the opportunity to take care of the younger ones, thus
enhancing their sense of responsibility.
Friendships can be enriching, but they are also the
cause of some of the difficulties which girls in any school may experience
during their school life. Learning
to be a friend in order to have a friend requires maturity and
flexibility. We encourage the
girls to mix with a wide variety of peers which is important and helpful when
moving on to new stages in their lives.
We use circle time, which can be very effective, to help the girls with
emotional and relationship issues and we encourage them to talk to a member of
staff with whom they feel comfortable.