Wellbeing & Health
Our pastoral care system is at the heart of the way we nurture the individual qualities, aptitudes and personalities of every pupil.
Our Wellbeing Base is a dedicated room housing the pastoral staff and it offers a quiet space with sofas and bean bags where pupils can find moments of calm.
Learning about how their minds and bodies work helps pupils to understand how to respond when they are required to look deep inside themselves and find just a little bit more: more energy, more determination, more acceptance, more common sense, more kindness, more concentration, more joy, more resilience, more ways to deal with life in all its brilliant diversity.
We have a particular focus on raising awareness of the importance of mental health and for providing pupils with a ‘toolkit’ to help them take on the challenges and opportunities of the modern world.
Each year group from Senior Prep to Senior 6 is divided into smaller class groups, led by a Form Tutor. The tutor's role is to oversee individual pupils' progress and acts as an essential link between pupil, teacher and parent. The tutor teams are headed up by four Heads of House, who work with class tutors to ensure that every single pupil feels safe and supported during their time at KA and develop the skills they need to live happy, healthy, balanced lives. Senior 6 is overseen by Mr Simpson, Head of S6.
A key strength of KA is the structure of our pastoral care and the time that Heads of House take to get to know individual pupils in their House. This creates a secure, inclusive community in what can sometimes be difficult adolescent years. Pupils know there is always someone for them to turn to whenever they have concerns, doubts or questions.
If problems arise, we do our utmost to ensure that they are addressed quickly and sensitively. We regard good, honest communication as an essential aspect of the partnership between the school and home.
As a school, we value courtesy and respect for each other; we have robust Relationships and Behaviour Policies.
Pupils are taught essential lessons for life through our Physical, Social & Relationship Education (PSE) Programme, which is incorporated into the curriculum. This programme has been developed specifically by us to help children to understand health and well-being issues, in order to develop positive habits and behaviours that will last a lifetime.
In weekly age-appropriate lessons, teachers provide a safe and supportive environment for discussions about decision-making, drugs and alcohol, intimacy and relationships, developing self-awareness as they prepare for independent lives.
To support our staff, we invite experts in their fields to speak to pupils in the most appropriate environment at key stages of their development.
We have a full-time, fully trained school nurse, who is available throughout the school day to assist should a child fall ill or have an accident and become physically injured or hurt. The school nurse is very much a part of the extended Pastoral Leadership Team offering universal support to all pupils as well as targeted support where appropriate.
Our School Counsellor is an experienced British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) qualified practitioner and their practice is externally supervised by a BACP supervisor.
Referrals to counselling are made via members of the Pastoral Leadership Team, usually Heads of House or School Nurses. Pupils who wish to have an introduction to the School Counselling Service should speak to their Head of House, who can complete the paperwork for a referral. Parents who are exploring the possibility of counselling for their son or daughter should contact their child’s Head of House, knowing that counselling can only work with the co-operation and agreement of the young person.
What is discussed with the School Counselling Service is confidential unless there is consent to share or there is a safety concern about a child being at risk or in danger, at which point the counsellor will explain their duty to share information appropriately.