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The Pastoral System at The Study

The Study was founded with a view to providing outstanding academic and pastoral care for its pupils, in the context of a coeducational day school preparing pupils of 16-19 years of age for the London GCE A-levels and thereafter for university admission. We value our academic and pastoral responsibilities to our pupils equally, in the belief that it is only a happy and well adjusted young person who will be able to select and to achieve his or her academic goals, and subsequently to contribute usefully to his or her chosen career and to society.

What do we mean by the term “pastoral care”? This is the attention of staff to the overall welfare of its pupils. In the term welfare we include a pupil’s health, both physical and emotional (this is a large area, comprising factors relating both to a student’s life in College and outside), their academic and extracurricular progress, their understanding and exposure to university and career opportunities, and their growth in areas of particular interest to them, guided through appropriate additional reading and attendance at events relevant to these specific interests.

Clearly, it is beyond the scope of each teacher in the College, to do this for each student at The Study. This will be even more readily apparent when we reach our target size of 90 pupils, ie. 45 in each year group. Therefore, a system has been put in place to enable specific teachers to take responsibility for the pastoral care of particular pupils, such that each of the young people in our care and his or her parents or guardians, is assured of the complete and comprehensive attention to their needs of one particular staff member at The Study. This person is, additionally, the first point of contact for a pupil or parent who wishes to discuss any aspect of a student’s academic, personal and/or social welfare. Such a person is designated Tutor to that particular pupil.

The work of the Tutor is rendered considerably more effective when all members of the faculty acknowledge this role by passing on timely information about the progress, special achievements, and interaction within the classroom of those they teach, to the appropriate Tutor. The College sets aside in the timetable one half hour period a week (Mondays from 2-2.30 pm) when Tutors meet their tutees together, as a group. This is a time for discussion of matters of mutual academic interest, current events, topical moral and ethical questions and (beginning in the Summer Term), matters relating to university applications and admission. Clearly, this time is not sufficient for the additional individual meetings a Tutor will wish to have with his or her tutees, and these should be scheduled for another time during the week, at a time mutually convenient to Tutor and tutee. The recommended time for such a meeting is half an hour.

Responsibilities of the Tutor:

The Turtor’s primary role is to promote the overall welfare of the pupils is his or her tutor group, through:

  • being aware at all times throughout the day, of the whereabouts of tutees (absences should in the first instance be reported to the Tutor, who will inform other members of staff; letters of excuse for such absences must first be approved by the Tutor, before they are passed on to the Principal)
  • being available for an individual discussions with tutees, for at least half an hour, at least once a week
  • being the first point of contact for parents or guardians (the Tutor’s telephone number or, if preferred, e-mail contact should be given to parents and tutee to facilitate this)
  • attending events, competitions, and the like, in which a tutee is participating
  • keeping abreast of tutees’ academic progress, in consultation with subject teachers
  • liasing with subject teachers and, if necessary, the Principal, on matters of concern to the tutee
  • keeping tutees informed of events or literature of particular interest or relevance to the work, interests and career plans of tutees
  • informing the Principal in a timely manner, of incidents or events which are likely to hamper the academic progress of a tutee
  • maintaining an ongoing dialogue with tutees about university and career plans, and keeping a record of information relevant to the student’s eventual application reference

Jill Macdonald
M. Phil. Oxon.Principal