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Pastoral Care Policy

Rationale

“Love one another as I have loved you”

We believe pastoral care is the total care of students and all others in our school community. We acknowledge that the responsibility of care is entrusted to all members of the school community and we recognise the family as the true context of the educational focus. We believe that quality relationships and mutual care are central to effective pastoral care and this should enable all to grow and to be affirmed in their dignity and worth as persons.

Possibly the greatest show of pastoral care that a teacher can give a child is to make sure they are getting the best education they can as this prepares to take control of their own lives as they grow into adults.

Aims

  • To ensure that Pastoral Care is integral and permeates the total environment and culture of the school.
  • To create a caring network between families, school and the wider community in which we live.
  • To develop skills in building personal relationships based on Gospel values of love, compassion, tolerance, acceptance, forgiveness, reconciliation and justice.
  • To develop structures, policies and practices, which support the individual student and all members of the school community.
  • To be aware of pressures and concerns affecting students, teachers and families within the school community.

 

3.Implementation

3.1 Personnel

Every member of the school community is responsible for the ongoing commitment to Pastoral Care. Teachers, students, parents and parish all need to work together to develop a caring community.

Each teacher/ staff member needs to be aware of and respond appropriately to each child’s particular personal needs.

Identifying needs and a plan of action will be in consultation with the Principal and/or the Executive Team.

A Pastoral Care Worker (employed under the National School Chaplaincy Programme) will work in conjunction with the staff/counselor/Parish Priest to assist in caring for all members of the school community.

3.2 Time Frame

As Pastoral care is an integral part of school life, it encompasses the whole school day.

3.3 Procedures and Practices to enhance Pastoral Care

3.3.1 School Practices

  • Morning Prayer…assembly and in class
  • Merit Awards at Assembly
  • Celebration of birthdays
  • Newsletter commendations
  • Kindergarten Orientation
  • School photos, trophies and academic and sporting achievements displayed.
  • End of Year celebrations and Certificates of Excellence for each student
  • Year 6 Farewell

3.3.2 Learning Community

  • Rights and responsibilities as part of the discipline policy
  • Cooperative learning in classrooms
  • Integration of Blooms Taxonomy and Multiple Intelligences philosophies
  • Stage based learning
  • Staff organised in Stage Teams
  • Assessment and Reporting based on student achievement

3.3.3 School Environment

  • Pleasant classroom environments
  • Well aired classrooms
  • Student work is displayed to enhance the learning environment

3.3.4 Special Programmes

  • Special Needs Programmes (as per policy)
  • Seasons for Growth
  • Integration of special needs children
  • Counsellor services

3.3.5   Parent and Community

  • School masses and Liturgies
  • Parent/ Teacher Interviews
  • Parent/ Teacher Meetings
  • Mother’s Day Breakfast
  • Father’s Day Breakfast
  • Grandparents Day
  • Helper’s Morning Tea
  • Parish Priest is an integral part of the school community
  • Parents are given a voice in decision making through surveys and Parents and Friends.

3.4 Resources

  • Seasons for Growth Program
  • St Laurence Centre Resources
  • Teaching/Learning Programmes acquired from a variety of sources according to curriculum and personal need.
3.3 The Pastoral Care Policy should be read in conjunction with the existing documents within the school:
  • Discipline Policy
  • Bullying Policy
  • Special Needs Policy
  • Enrolment Policy
  • Child Protection Guidelines
  • Critical Incident Policy

Pastoral Care Worker

Integral to Pastoral Care is a commitment with partnership and shared responsibility among staff, students and families.

Specific Role for Pastoral Care Worker:

  • Foster a vibrant sense of prayer and a sense of the sacred in the community
  • Assist staff with school Masses and Liturgies
  • Gospel values: faith, hope, love, forgiveness, respect, freedom, justice
  • Care for those within the community especially the disadvantaged
  • Nurture the personal development of each student working with the teacher(s)/family to develop an action plan to respond to a students’ particular need
  • Be available to members of the community to listen to and to be a support as needed
  • Bring to the attention of the Principal/Executive aspect that requires specific structures and organisational arrangements – parent liaison and student counselling, always ensuring respect for the privacy of lives of the family members and their confidentiality
  • Assist in the provision of pastoral programs aimed at helping students to value themselves and to the experience well-being eg: self esteem, grief and loss programs
  • Visit families as the need arises to support and encourage them with their children

Evaluation

The Pastoral Care Policy will be evaluated at regular intervals.

Policy Updated 15/05/08