All parents want their daughters to be happy, successful, well-rounded individuals. Whilst no school can guarantee ‘happiness’, at JCG we seek to develop a student’s sense of self, their confidence to embrace challenges with a smile and their understanding of where to find support, secure in the knowledge that this will always be given.
We believe that it is artificial to separate pastoral from academic care as the two are intrinsically linked. Our student support team has a detailed overview, understanding and appreciation of each student in the school and the progress she is making in all aspects of her development. On joining the school students are assigned to a tutor group. They meet with their tutor twice each day; the tutor gets to know the students in his or her form group very well. The tutor is also the first point of contact for parents. Tutors usually stay with their form groups throughout the Key Stage and monitor their wellbeing, progress and extra-curricular participation. In addition to the tutor team, students have access to a full-time counsellor, Mrs Pinto-Williams, assistant heads of key stage and teaching assistants who are trained to deliver ELSA (emotional literacy) as well as academic support. Each year group is overseen by the Head of Key Stage: Mr Palfreyman (KS3), Miss Hopkins (KS4) and Mrs Sipteri (KS5). The Heads of Key Stage are overseen by the Assistant Head Progress and Wellbeing, Mrs Silvestri-Fox.
Our School Counsellor works with students, staff and parents in order to provide support for our students.
Our counsellor is in school on Tuesdays and Thursdays and is available to talk about any matters which might concern students whether related to school life, home life or friendships.
Students can make appointments with our counsellor by email, by talking to our receptionists or by asking a teacher to make an appointment on their behalf. We maintain flexibility in the way appointments are handled with our counsellor in order for students to feel comfortable when accessing the service whilst trying to continue our care for students at all times.
Students can speak in confidence to our counsellor and relevant information from the session would only be shared with the school or parents should the counsellor consider a student to be at risk of harm to self or others. This would be carried out in line with our Child Protection Policy. Occasionally it may be appropriate to refer the student to another agency and parents would be informed as appropriate.
Sometimes students may request that friends go to a counselling session with them as supporters. This can be useful both to the student seeking the counselling and the supporters. In such cases, our counsellor will follow the following procedure:
1. At all times and in all aspects of her clinical work, she will consider the ability of all students to be ‘Gillick competent’.
2. At the initial point of contact with student clients and their supporters, she will ask the reason for them attending and whether it involves hurting themselves in any way. Should there be any indication that self harming, risk taking behaviours or issues relating to abuse, then she will ask the student supporters to leave whilst encouraging the student client to stay.
3. Should the student client indicate that this is not the issue, she will follow her usual engagement dialogue which now includes re-iterating that should there be a mention during the conversation of self-harming, risk taking, suicidal thoughts or planning she will stop the conversation immediately and she will advise the student supporters to let her know if they are affected in any way by the material the student brings to the session.
5. During the session she will monitor both the student client and their supporters for signs of distress.
6. Should she become concerned for anyone in the room, she will stop the session and ask the student supporters to leave.
7. Once the session has ended she will contact the Assistant Head responsible or the appropriate Head of Year/Key Stage to check on the student supporter as soon as possible. In most cases, the parents of supporters would be contacted if appropriate.
For more information about the school counselling service, please contact our counsellor Ms Pinto-Adams. E mail:email@example.com