At Polam Hall School pastoral care is an integral part of the school day. Provision for PSHCE (Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education) is woven into everything we do and teaching is focused towards friendship and mutual support between peers.
This message is reinforced by the School motto: ‘Concordia Crescimus’ (We Grow in Harmony). Teamwork and collaboration are encouraged and, in Reception-Y3, are rewarded through a ‘marbles in a jar’ system, earning marbles leading to a treat chosen when a target number is reached.
Children in Junior School spend the majority of their time with their class teacher, enabling strong bonds of trust and pastoral care to become established. Alongside this they receive weekly specialist teaching from staff based in our Senior School, creating positive links as they move through the different phases of the school. Pupils from all year groups play together at lunchtime and this ‘family feel’ is a key feature in our school. All pupils are allocated to one of the school’s four Houses when joining Polam Hall and, alongside House Points, there are regular House activities, fundraising and assemblies to develop these bonds.
By Year 6 pupils are expected to take on more responsibility which can be anything from organising fundraising events to being selected as a prefect or house captain. As children grow in confidence, they are invited to show visitors around the school, lead assemblies and take on the mantle of being ambassadors for Junior School. Developing confidence is a priority within our school and all pupils are expected to participate in class assemblies and productions in front of 300+ people in the school’s Liddiard Theatre.
Junior School Council provides a marvellous introduction to the democratic process, with candidates presenting manifestos to their peers prior to voting, giving children both a voice within school and a right to self-expression. In addition, we also appoint a Junior Head Girl and Junior Head Boy each year plus deputies. These roles, alongside opportunities to participate in small and large scale fundraising and involvement with a variety of events within the local area, enable pupils to fully understand what it means to be part of a community and forge the foundations for them to become compassionate, self-assured citizens as they progress through the school.