Pastoral Care

The aims of Pastoral Care are indistinguishable from the aims of the school. Similarly, the aims of the school cannot be separated into those which are “pastoral” and those which have no pastoral strand.  Much the same is true of the staff of the school; the teaching and the non-teaching staff  work together and share important roles in the success of pastoral care.  The focus of all school policy and action is the student – her growth, her circumstances, the development of her abilities and interests, and the recognition and celebration of her achievements.

Pastoral Organisation

Students are placed in form groups on entry to the school in Year 7.  Each new Year 7 Form meets on the induction afternoon in July of Year 6, when time is spent with the Form Tutor in the prospective form room.  There are thirty students in each form. Year 7 is based in Hyde House, though some lessons take place daily in the other parts of the school.  This arrangement eases transition from the smaller primary environment into this large and busy secondary school. Students stay in the same form group throughout the years of compulsory schooling. The school encourages students to prepare for the responsibilities of adult life by taking on various responsibilities in school. In the Sixth Form, tutor groups have just over twenty students.

There are Heads of each Year, who lead teams of Tutors. As a general principle, Heads of Year stay with their year groups and Tutors with their Forms. This helps to ensure continuity of care for each girl in a strong, supportive social group, and to develop the team of Tutors and their Head of Year as an informed, effective pastoral group. Staff development, through shared management of change, is thus built into the system.

The school keeps in close touch with parents and aims to ensure effective communication takes place between home and school.

The expertise of support agencies, such as the Local Authority’s Children’s Services and School Attendance Improvement Officer, Chessbrook Education Support Centre, and Educational Psychology Service, is used regularly and effectively.

Wellbeing at WGGS

The world in which our pupils are growing up is an increasingly complex one, which presents many positive and exciting opportunities, but also challenges and risks. At Watford Grammar School for Girls’ we would like to support our pupils in managing their academic, personal and social lives in a positive way. Teaching about mental wellbeing is paramount in giving our pupils the knowledge and capability to take care of themselves and receive support if problems arise.

We aim to reduce stigma attached to mental wellbeing by engendering an ethos that encourages openness whereby pupils can seek support at school, at home or online as they gain knowledge about how to promote good health and wellbeing.

The Peer Education Project, supported by the Mental Health Foundation, is delivered to our year 7 pupils by our year 12 students.

Throughout the school we follow the 5 ways to wellbeing:

In school, we can facilitate access to counselling, mindfulness, one-to-one or group support. We can help pupils find the right person to talk to about friendship, learning, home life, exam stress, medical conditions, careers or anything that is on their mind.

If needed, we can offer support with accessing external counselling, mental health referrals, bereavement support, career advice, medical appointments and much more.