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Support for Students - Pastoral Care and Wellbeing

The Benefits of Pastoral Care:

  • It makes a positive contribution to the pupil’s personal and social development. Through various programmes such as Social, Personal and Health Education and others, the pupils have an opportunity to learn a range of skills and reflect on ways to handle important situations in life.
  • It makes a contribution to student achievement.
  • Enhances Home – School relations.
  • Provides a range of support services for our students.

Every member of staff contributes to student support in the school.

There are key roles however, which carry significant support dimensions and responsibilities.

PASTORAL CARE / STUDENT SUPPORT TEAM

This team brings together all the support services of the school to review how the school is responding to the overall needs of the student and in particular students facing challenges. The team plays a part in supporting year heads and class teachers, reviewing students with particular difficulties and advising relevant groups within the school community on pastoral issues.

● The Student Support Team meets formally once per week but informally throughout the week as matters arise.
● Community links are fostered and the student support team meets with local agencies on occasion.
● Minutes of all meetings are recorded and filed.

The members of the team are as follows:

Michael Davitt

Deputy Principal

Finola Foy

Deputy Principal

Joan Rennick

Chaplain

Richard Berkeley

Guidance Counsellor

Marian Gill

Guidance Counsellor

Chris Holloway

SEN Liaison

Aoife O’Toole

Well Co-ordinator

Clare Hoban

School Therapist

Marie Burke

SEN Co-ordinator

Guidance Counsellors

Richard Berkeley

and

Marian Gill

The Guidance Counsellor participates in and co-ordinates the school guidance and counselling service. This participation can be categorised under three integrated areas of activity:
● Personal / Social Guidance and Counselling
● Educational Guidance and Counselling
● Vocational Guidance and Counselling

This service is central to our pastoral care provision and involves a range of activities which include:
● Counselling
● Assessment
● Information gathering, organisation and dissemination
● Referral
● Consultation with parents, teachers and pupils
● Guidance activities to help students make transitions
● Administration
● Evaluation

School Therapist

Clare Hoban

● To create a safe, confidential, therapeutic space for your child to talk through and process any emotions or challenges they are facing in any aspect of their lives.

● This service will be replicating an ‘outside’ counselling service; students will be referred for counselling by the care team within the school.

● It will be a formal counselling service with set processes and procedures.

● Upheld by the ethical boundaries of the BACP/IACP.

● Contract in place which must be signed by both the child and the parent/guardian before we begin our therapy sessions.

Chaplain

Mrs Joan Rennick

The Chaplain is involved in the pastoral aspect to school life in a variety of ways:

● Supporting individual students at times of need through teacher or student referrals

● Supporting staff members at times of need

● Providing school liturgies at appropriate times in school life

● Involvement in the running of student pastoral programmes at times of particular need

● Being part of the student support team

● Attending weekly year head/pastoral care meetings

SEN Co-ordinator

Ms Marie Burke

Responsibilities:

● To co-ordinate provision for students with special educational needs

● To advise the Principal on a regular basis regarding SEN

● To meeting with LS / Resource teachers and SNA’s once a week to review progress of individual students, discuss best practice and evaluate procedures

● To facilitate the construction of Individual Education Plans which are directed towards meeting students’ individual needs

● To co-ordinate the development of school based strategies for the identification and assessment of pupils with SEN

● To liaise with and advise fellow teachers

● To work closely with the Student Support Team through regular attendance at meetings which review the school’s response to the overall needs of students with challenges

● To oversee the records of all students with special educational needs

● To liaise with external agencies: RACE, SENO, NEPS, CAMHS, etc.

All students have access to The Well. The Well is our wellness hub where the physical and emotional needs of students are supported. The Well is a space where students can self regulate, speak to one of our support staff, use the Cubbie and simply relax. Basic first aid is also provided here.

Please visit to cubbie.ie to see how it can help.

The Well 2
The Well 3

LEARNING SUPPORT / RESOURCE TEACHING TEAM

The role of learning support teachers and resource teachers is to meet the needs of pupils with SEN through one-to-one tuition, small group work, team teaching and in-class support, and to construct an individual programme of support. The structured programmes should be in line with students’ needs and provide opportunities for success.

Wellbeing
Co-Ordinator

Marian Gill

The Wellbeing Co-ordinator is involved in all aspects of school Wellbeing.
Particular responsibilities include:

● To organise the WOW (Wellbeing on Wednesday) classes

● To organise Wellbeing days and events including guest speakers for students, parents and staff

● To liaise with fellow teachers about Wellbeing activities

● To oversee the implementation of Wellbeing subjects- CSPE, SPHE and PE

● They are a link between Wellbeing Prefects and staff.

Year Head

● Year Heads have both a pastoral and disciplinary role.

● They are the key point of contact for their particular year group and are assisted in their duties by an assistant year head.

● Year Heads mentor all students in their year group, identify students needing care, and support students in difficulty.

● The Year Head directs students when necessary to other personnel on the staff: chaplain, guidance counsellors, SEN co-ordinator etc.

● The Year Head liaises with parents according to agreed procedure particularly in respect to the yearly parent teacher meeting and individual meetings with parents.

● The Year Head will report to staff in relation to the year group and from time to time will meet with subject teachers.

● The Year Head will attend a weekly meeting with the principal, deputy principals and other year heads

● The role of the Year Head in relation to behavioural matters is outlined in the Code of Behaviour.

● The Year Head encourages good behaviour

Class Teacher

● A class teacher, on behalf of the school community, undertakes the role of caring for a particular class group with responsibility in the pastoral and academic areas.

● They get to know the students as individuals. They have an awareness of and support students with difficulties

● They foster positive class spirit and boost class morale. They act as a friendly guide and motivator to individuals and the general class group.

WOW CLASS - WELLBEING ON WEDNESDAY

WOW Class 1
WOW Class 2
WOW Class 3

Every Wednesday all students  enjoy a ‘beyond the  curriculum’ class known as  WOW (Wellbeing on Wednesday). During this class students are free to choose which workshop style class they participate in. These classes are composed of students from across all year groups.

Murals/Public Art

Public Speaking and Debating

Ladies GAA

Fitness Class

Music and Singing

Volleyball

Mindfulness, Meditation and Yoga  

Marquetry

Couch to 5K

Local Walks

Pencil Drawing

Table Quiz

Technology (working with plastics)

Running Club

Boys GAA

Board Games

Booknook

Chess

Dressmaking

Journalling

Junk Kouture

Book Club

Sudoku

Creative Writing

LIST OF SUPPORTS

If any students or parents need any support please feel free to contact our Pastoral Care team at pastoralcare@sanctamaria.ie
or our Counsellors richardberkeley@sanctamaria.ie or mariangill@sanctmaria.ie

List of Supports

Here are some useful links:

mindspacemayo.ie – Teenage counselling and support service

mayomha.ie – Mayo Mental Health Association

westportfrc.ie – Westport Family Resource

spunout.ie – Youth support information