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NAPCE News – February 2021

NAPCE News – February 2021

Making a positive difference to young people through pastoral care

FEATURE ARTICLE: NAPCE Officer John Hunt Compares the Experience of Online Learning with ‘In-School’ Teaching During the Pandemic 

Comparing the Experience of Online Learning with ‘In-School’ Teaching During the Pandemic.

Firstly, on behalf of the National Association for Pastoral Care in Education, I want to pay tribute and offer my heartfelt gratitude to colleagues all over the country who have made such a Herculean collective effort to ensure that our young people are educated, catered for and cared for.

Amidst unhelpful headlines, the total myth of schools being ‘closed’ and the last minute changes inflicted on the profession, teachers and support staff in schools have stepped up and done everything that has been needed and more.

I have seen first hand the pressure on staff, both in and out of school, and I am in awe of the work that has been done and the speed at which we have adapted to an entirely new way of working. Thank you all.

The late, great Ken Robinson said that ‘The real role of leadership is climate control – creating a climate of possibility’.

While I have always agreed with this statement, this last half term as a Pastoral Leader in a large secondary school has made me feel more like an air conditioning unit than ever before!

Attempting to maintain a consistent ‘temperature’ among students, staff and parents, while taking into account the very new and very real challenges in our own (occasionally neglected!) personal lives, has proven to be quite the task.

With so many unknowns, the constant anxiety over the pandemic and the many challenges in schools (that don’t go away just because we’re not on site), I have felt like I have a very different job this half term to the one I usually do, and indeed, the one I signed up for!

The most difficult aspect of this peculiar half term for me has been finding a balance between what we ordinarily do in school and what needs to be done in our new world.

Maintaining this temperature of normality across a school, while dealing with a number of persistent issues in my role, has presented a real challenge for me professionally during this period of remote learning.

Three obvious examples I can think of are:

Scenario 1

An individual student is disengaged from learning in school and simply not doing very much, struggling academically and socially.

I can work with the student, with the staff, with parents/carers, with external agencies if required to support the young person and hopefully get them re-engaged in learning and with friends. I can facilitate face to face meetings, really delving into the issues facing the young person and taking action to support them. This is my way! I rely on the relationships I have built with young people and their families to have an impact.

VS:

An individual student is disengaged from online learning, struggling academically and socially.

When I have a student disengaged from remote learning, I can still do all of the above in theory but I have been struck by the difference that the lack of true face to face communication can have. I have found it much more difficult to involve students in any meaningful communication online, something that I think (hope!) is a strength of mine when we’re in school. As a teacher, I can deliver engaging content within the classroom and this has been hindered considerably through remote teaching. I have also been painfully aware, as many readers will be, that often when a student is appearing to be disengaged it is not that they are avoiding the lesson or their work but simply that they do not have the device to access it! I was very proud of NAPCE’s offer to provide learners with laptops over recent months but wonder how many students could have been positively impacted with a more efficient roll out of devices from the Government.

As a pastoral leader, how can I support students’ social development when it feels like no one is in touch with anyone properly anyway? How will this prolonged period of physical social isolation impact on students in the long term and what difference we may encounter when we are back in school? The barrier that a computer screen or phone has put between me and the young people I serve has felt truly significant to me; I look forward to it being gone!

Scenario 2

Staff come to me with instances of poor student behaviour in school

I would investigate and work with the staff and student to resolve the issue. There are clear systems in place to support this work; we have worked tirelessly on developing a consistent and simple behaviour for learning policy which all staff can use with ease. Again, I rely heavily on direct communication with the people involved; I can read body language, I can respond directly and quickly to questions raised from either side, I can make quick decisions based on what I see, hear and feel as a result of all of this communication.

VS

Staff come to speak to me about poor student behaviour online

Well! We can issue virtual warnings (in place of written ones in school), and we can mute students in the chat function… but what capacity do we really have to do much more than this when the students are working in their own home. Online detentions? I think not! Promise a sanction when students are back in school? No chance.

As always, I have found parents to be a very important ally in these instances but I have no problem admitting that I have found it challenging to deal with student misbehaviour or rudeness to staff online. We are in the age of social media, whereby people can throw out any opinion unchallenged. Is it any wonder that some young people feel emboldened in their comments, now that they spend so much time in a virtual world?

This also links to the first scenario I outlined, in that I want to understand why the young person may be exhibiting these behaviours but I struggle to get to that place with students due to the nature of how we are right now. If I use the chat function, how will what I write be received by the student (and their parents who may be sat with them!). I’m sure we can all think of instances in which something we have typed has perhaps not come across as we’d like and dealing with student behaviour is complex enough without the danger of text speak! Will staff understand the difficulty we face in dealing with incidents compared to when we are in school? Will they feel supported? How can I ensure that they feel like their concerns are taken seriously and dealt with, when the reality may be that a phone call home is the only real action I can take? A staff member may insist an exclusion is appropriate – what am I going to do, send the student home?! While I have found this to be difficult, I must also stress that I have been so impressed by the conduct of the vast, vast majority of the students and their behaviour and attitude to learning has been truly brilliant!

Scenario 3

A staff member is struggling with a particular class in school in terms of their involvement in lessons.

I can easily drop into the lesson. I can observe what is going on and support the staff member with effective teaching and learning strategies which I have developed over years in the classroom, in the hope that these will see an improvement for all concerned. I can speak to any individual students who need this intervention and can ensure that the staff member feels supported throughout. I can continue to be a visible, supportive presence for them and a visible reminder to the class of our school expectations.

VS

A staff member is struggling with a particular class online in terms of their involvement in lessons

I can still easily drop into the online lesson and observe. I can still easily speak to individuals via Teams. Am I truly in a position to offer any coaching or guidance on remote teaching? Absolutely not. I have no more experience of teaching online than any of my colleagues do (and I am truly indebted to colleagues who have shared some great tips!) We have all learnt a great deal over this half term with online provision but I don’t feel like I’ve been nearly as much use to the staff in our school as I would usually be.

There are many, many more examples where I have found things that I usually breeze through to be difficult and I am sure that some readers will recognise this rather frustrating feeling. As I outlined at the beginning, this half term has felt like quite a task. A task which has been challenging, difficult, occasionally tense and utterly exhausting. More than anything though, I have found it to be a task which has brought out the absolute best in so many colleagues; their resilience, kindness, humour and unwavering determination to do the best they can for our young people. It has also reinforced to me the importance of the role that relationships play in schools, be they in person or online. Regardless of any technological advancements we make as a result of this pandemic, of which there will surely be many, pastoral care and the human nature of our relationships must remain a constant driver in our schools.

John Hunt
NEC Officer
NAPCE
February 2021

AWARDS: Entries Coming in for the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021

Entries Come in for The National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021

Nominations are coming in for the second annual National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education since the opening of the entry window in January.

The Awards scheme is the first and only in the UK to recognise great practice of pastoral care providers in the education sector.

The independent judging panel for the 2021 Awards, who will preside over all entries, has also just been announced:

Professor Stan Tucker of Newman University in Birmingham, NAPCE President
Professor Richard Pring, of Oxford University Associate Professor Anne Emerson of Nottingham University
Doctor Noel Purdy of Stranmillis University College in Belfast
Phil Jones Chair of NAPCE. 

We were delighted by the participation and success of the first NAPCE Awards and are so excited about bringing it back, but this year the event will be even bigger and better.

We’ve added a new category in International Contribution to Pastoral Care this year, a worthy addition to the seven existing classifications which proved so popular in 2020.

The closing date for all categories this year will be Monday May 24th, 2021, so don’t hang around, get your entries in now.

Just like last year, the finalists of the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education will be invited to attend the ceremony on Friday, September 24th, 2021 to share the experience with peers and find out who wins each Award.

Speaking about the Awards, Phil Jones, Chair of NAPCE, said: “We are delighted to see the quality of entries is so high once again this year. 

“We believe it is even more important this year to recognise the pastoral heroes who have done so much to support our young people through the challenges presented by COVID-19.

Nominations only take a few minutes to complete and we urge all schools, individuals and associated organisations to get involved, recognition for those who make a real difference is so important.” 

Criteria for Each Category
 
Pastoral School of the Year
A school that can demonstrate a commitment to pastoral care and support for learners that makes a real difference in the progress and personal development of young people in the school.

Pastoral Team of the Year
A team that works in pastoral care and can demonstrate a determination to support young people to achieve their full potential and a positive impact on the young people they work with.

Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
A member of staff who works in pastoral care and who always makes the extra effort to support young people to enable them to become effective learners and achieve success.

Pastoral Leader of the Year
Has a passion for pastoral care that is shared with colleagues to inspire and motivate them to make a real difference in the lives of the young people they work with.

Pastoral Development of the Year
A pastoral initiative or idea that has achieved positive outcomes and has improved the learning experience and future life chances, for young people.

Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
An individual, group or organisation who through their actions have raised awareness about pastoral care or pastoral issues and encouraged positive improvements for the benefit of young people.

Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
A person, group or organisation that has made a real difference in pastoral care, for the benefit of young people.

International Contribution to Pastoral Care
An international school, organisation outside of the UK or an individual working in research or in an international school outside of the UK, that has promoted or delivered high quality pastoral care.
 
Any school or organisation can make a nomination for one or more of the categories. You do not need to be a member of NAPCE to make a nomination. Self-nominations are accepted.
 
Nominations are supported with information about how they meet the criteria for the category.

Nominations are for pastoral work during the 2020-21 academic year. The finalists and winners are selected by the judging panel of leading academics and practitioners in pastoral care and education. All finalists are invited to attend a presentation event when the winners are announced. 

There is a prize of one hundred pounds for the school, university, or organisation that the winners represent, in each category, to support their future work in pastoral care. There are prizes and plaques for winners and certificates for finalists. 
 
Nominations opened on Monday 18th January, 2021 and it is a good idea to make your nomination as soon as possible so you do not forget. 
 

Activity Date 2021
Nominations Open Monday 18th January
Nominations Close Monday 24th May
Judging Completed Friday 25th June
Finalists informed Monday 28th June
Tickets for Presentation Available Monday 5th July
Invitations to attend Presentation Event sent Monday 5th July
Presentation Event Friday 24th September

To make your nomination

You can enter the NAPCE Awards here  https://napceawards.wufoo.com/forms/napce-awards-2021-entry-form/

Nominations are encouraged for awards in different categories from schools and educational establishments and you DO NOT need to currently be a member of NAPCE to take part.

FROM THE CHAIR: An Update on NAPCE Activities from Phil Jones

 

From the Chair with Phil Jones

Despite the latest Lockdown, the start of the year has been a busy time for NAPCE.

NAPCE was pleased to contribute once again to the planning and delivery of the annual conference for pastoral leaders organised by the Association of School and College leaders (ASCL).

I was pleased to work with Maria O’Neill the founder of UK Pastoral Chat, to deliver a workshop on ‘Pastoral Care for Remote Learning’, as NAPCE’s contribution to the Conference.

Although it was a virtual Conference this year, it was very well attended with delegates from schools across the United Kingdom and an impressive list of speakers and workshop leaders who explored many of the current issues facing people working in pastoral roles.

It is exciting times for Maria, whose first book on pastoral care, ‘Proactive Pastoral Care. Nurturing happy, healthy, and successful learners”, is published by Bloomsbury on April 15th.

NAPCE was pleased to be invited to contribute to the planning of Safer Internet Day 2021. This annual event is organised to raise awareness of making the internet a safer place for young people and NAPCE was delighted to be able to support this important initiative.

I attended the virtual event on February 9th on behalf of NAPCE and this included a live streaming on YouTube from the top of the BT Tower and information about the good work that is being done, by many organisations, to help make the use of the internet a safer experience for all young people.

On the same day, I presented a live webinar for ASCL which was attended by headteachers and school leaders from across the United Kingdom, about Leading on Safeguarding.

It is right to see NAPCE continuing to support these important initiatives that will improve the learning experience and lives of young people. 

The Pandemic and the restrictions that have had to be imposed are having an impact on young peoples’ well-being and progress in their learning.

There will be a need in the future to look at how the learning and mental health of young people can be supported, following the experience of the pandemic and NAPCE and its members will want to explore and share ideas about how we can respond to this challenge.

NAPCE wanted to contribute to supporting young people who are struggling during the Pandemic. Our initiative of ‘Laptops for Learners’ invited members of NAPCE to nominate deserving young people, who would benefit from being funded for a laptop to use for their learning at home.

We were very pleased to provide funding for the laptops and although we can only make a small contribution to a big problem, we hope it will make a huge difference to the learning experience of the young people we have been able to support. 

The nominations have been opened for the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021.

It is more important than ever this academic year that we recognise and value the work and contributions of the pastoral heroes working in pastoral care. 

Nominations can be made in the following categories:

Pastoral School of the Year
A school that can demonstrate a commitment to pastoral care and support for learners that makes a real difference in the progress and personal development of young people in the school.
Pastoral Team of the Year
A team that works in pastoral care and can demonstrate a determination to support young people to achieve their full potential and a positive impact on the young people they work with.
Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
A member of staff who works in pastoral care and who always makes the extra effort to support young people to enable them to become effective learners and achieve success.
Pastoral Leader of the Year
Has a passion for pastoral care that is shared with colleagues to inspire and motivate them to make a real difference in the lives of the young people they work with.
Pastoral Development of the Year
A pastoral initiative or idea that has achieved positive outcomes and has improved the learning experience and future life chances, for young people.
Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
An individual, group or organisation who through their actions have raised awareness about pastoral care or pastoral issue sand encouraged positive improvements for the benefit of young people.
Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
person, group or organisation that has made a real difference in pastoral care, for the benefit of young people.
International Contribution to Pastoral Care
An international school, organisation outside of the UK or an individual working in research or in an international school outside of the UK, that has promoted or delivered high quality pastoral care.

Nominations can be made by following this link. 

https://napceawards.wufoo.com/forms/napce-awards-2021-entry-form

Thank you to schools and organisations who have already sent their nominations in. If you would like to nominate yourself or somebody else for an award, put it at the top of your ‘to do’ list.

The judges for the 2021 Awards have been confirmed as, Professor Stan Tucker of Newman University in Birmingham, NAPCE President Professor Richard Pring, of Oxford University, Associate Professor Anne Emerson of Nottingham University, Doctor Noel Purdy of Stranmillis University College in Belfast, and me as Chair of NAPCE.

On March 27th NAPCE will be organising virtual meetings for the National Executive Committee, The Editorial Board, and the Annual General Meeting.

All members are invited to attend the Annual General Meeting which will take place on Saturday 27th March at 12-30pm.

Please contact admin@napce.org.uk if you are a member who would like to attend the AGM or if you are interested in becoming a member.

The AGM is a good opportunity to find out more about the work of NAPCE and learn more about future plans.

Looking ahead, 2022 will be the 40th Anniversary year since the Association was formed and the journal, ‘Pastoral Care in Education’ was first published.

The Association is proud of its history and the work it has done since the founder members first formed the Association as a charity to support pastoral care.

In that time, it has shared good practice and research that has made a real impact in supporting young people to reach their full potential from education and to support their personal development, to enable them to make a positive contribution to society.

The Association has plans to celebrate the contribution it has made to educational thinking and practice with events and activities planned for 2022.

A small team have been working on plans for a book, to reflect on developments in pastoral care since the Association was formed in 1982 and the challenges and opportunities pastoral care will face in the future.

Good progress has been made on the ideas for the book, and a proposal is ready to go to publishers.

The hope is that the book will be published during 2022. There are plans to produce a special edition of the journal that will be sent to NAPCE members and subscribers to the journal in the spring or summer of 2022.

We also have exciting news for a ‘live’ conference in September 2022, where members and supporters of NAPCE will be able to meet, following the publication of the NAPCE book and special edition of the journal.

Other events and activities are planned to celebrate the anniversary of the Association during 2022.

Please continue to follow NAPCE on Twitter on @NAPCE1 or facebook.com/napce1 for all the latest news and information.

If you have colleagues or contacts who have an interest in pastoral care and education, please encourage them to contact admin@napce.org.uk to register for the monthly NAPCE newsletter.

It is free and will be sent to the email address provided, but we need a request to be registered for data protection purposes. Thank you for your continued support for NAPCE.

Phil Jones
National Chair
NAPCE

MEET THE TEAM: Introducing New NAPCE Team Member Susana Cervera

 

Introducing NAPCE’s Newest Team Member, Susana Cervera

Susana grew up in Spain but continued her education in the UK, where she completed a MChem Hons at Kingston University.

Following a seven year stint at a global organisation in London, Susana finally listened to her inner call and completed her PGCE at Homerton College, University of Cambridge, in 2010.

She then went on to gain Qualified Teacher Status and taught at several schools in Essex.

“What I enjoyed most during my time as a teacher was establishing that special teacher-student relationship that is so closely interweaved with pastoral care,” she revealed.

“As a teacher and tutor, I viewed myself as having a responsibility not only to help young people to develop academically, but also to help them develop as a person.

“Many recent studies link health and wellbeing to academic performance but to me, having had to overcome quite a few difficulties whilst growing up, there was never any doubt about the importance of feeling safe and how closely health and wellbeing are linked to your idea of self-worth and how that can translate, not only into academic achievement, but also to function as a person in later life.

“The schools I had the fortune to worth with took pastoral care seriously. As a teacher, I was in a position where I could help. I wanted my students to be safe and I saw my job as key in the mechanism to ensuring their physical and emotional welfare.

“I no longer teach but I continue to be involved with education and now through collaborating with NAPCE I hope to continue to contribute to the work that has been so important to me.”

Effective pastoral care can improve students’ attendance and retention rates; foster an orderly atmosphere where all students can access opportunities, and enhance their academic achievements; promote tolerance, especially in students and teachers with due regard for protected characteristics; and subdue racism and inequality, and teach respect for self and others (Benard, 1995, pp. 3–4).

NAPCE News – January 2021

NAPCE News – January 2021

Making a positive difference to young people through pastoral care

FEATURE ARTICLE: “Twelve Months of Pastoral Care” – NAPCE Chair Phil Jones Shares a Calendar of Focus Areas in Pastoral Care for 2021

Twelve Months for Pastoral Care

One of the challenges for staff in pastoral roles is that you can often feel like there is no time to respond to all the challenges that you face. It is impossible to solve every problem and meet all the demands that are made on pastoral staff. It might help to have a different focus for every month in the year. The ideas in this article could be used as a stimulus for monthly pastoral team meetings to provide inspiration for sharing positive ideas and plans.

JANUARY
New Resolutions
An opportunity to think about what personal qualities could be improved

One of the positive things about working in schools is that there is always an opportunity to make a fresh start and to take advantage of lessons learnt form previous experiences. There is a new academic year, a new calendar year, a new term, a new timetable, a new week, a new class, and these are all opportunities to respond positively and with new energy to challenges. For pastoral staff, the new calendar year can be a time to think about what worked well in the first term and how practice could be adjusted to be more effective.  It is also a good opportunity to encourage learners to think about the personal qualities they would like to improve and the actions they could take to become better people.

FEBRUARY
Building Resilience
Making a commitment to not give up on achieving ambitious goals

This is a time of year when pastoral staff must summon up all their strength to maintain their determination to achieve their pastoral goals and to provide a positive culture for learning. A smile can make a huge difference, to motivating other people. The winter months can seem never ending. In the middle of lockdowns and a global pandemic this is even more likely to be true. The focus for pastoral staff, is on ‘keeping everybody going’, with the belief that investing time and effort now will bring rewards in the future. It is an opportunity to build resilience, through tutor time activities and assemblies. A clear message from pastoral staff, that effort now will achieve success in the future, provides a sense of purpose for each day. This will encourage young people to become more effective learners and support their personal development, in preparation for the challenges they will face in the world of work.

MARCH
Using Resources
Making the most of available support and opportunities 

The spring is the time for pastoral leaders to review the resources that they have available to achieve their goals.  Budget planning, is an opportunity to identify where investment, could have the biggest impact and make a real difference for learners. The most valuable resource for pastoral work is staff. Time should be given to considering whether they are being deployed, so they can use their skills and expertise to support learners effectively. What opportunities can be provided for improving their pastoral skills and expertise, through good quality, continuous professional development? Pastoral leaders should review the pastoral support they are providing and how it is making a difference, in supporting young people to achieve their full potential. Is there effective support from counselling available? What additional support is provided to support learners’ academic progress and personal development? How are parents involved as active partners in the education of their children? How does the school form effective relationships with external agencies? It is important to make sure that learners and parents are aware of the support that is available.

APRIL
Student Voice
Listen to feedback from learners about their experience

This month there is a focus on the opportunities provided for young people to contribute to their learning and to participate in the activities of the school. Review what opportunities are provided for young people, to feedback about their learning experience and the support provided for their personal development. This can inform future planning and ensure that time and effort are directed where they can be most effective. What systems and structures such as, school councils, can be used to ensure that this process is effective? How can young people, be given opportunities, to contribute to the work of the school, for example, as peer educators or peer mentors. Giving young people responsibility, helps to develop positive attitudes and social skills. If pastoral work can encourage young people, to feel that they belong to the school, they are more likely to be positive in their approach to learning and more ambitious about what they can achieve from education and in later life.

MAY
Raising Aspirations
Ensuring a positive response to any challenges.

This is the time of year when learners must demonstrate their knowledge and understanding through tests and examinations. For many young people this can be an experience where they feel under pressure and isolated from support. The pastoral structures and systems of the school need to encourage learners, to understand their feelings and to be positive about what they can achieve. In preparing for tests and examinations, young people will benefit from a positive pastoral message, that they are not on their own, and that the school is there to support them in facing the challenges. This can include providing guidance about time management, revision techniques and looking after their health and well-being. A positive pastoral strategy is to encourage learners to see tests and examinations as challenges they have prepared for and not as experiences to expose their weaknesses and lack of effort.

JUNE
Long term targets and goals
Using recent experiences to inform decisions about future plans.

With a new academic year on the horizon, now is the time for pastoral leaders and pastoral staff to start planning. A new academic year will provide opportunities to change structures and to adapt pastoral systems, in a way that is not always possible during term time. This needs planning and needs to use recent experiences to inform decisions, to ensure that the focus is on the right priorities. Allowing time for planning, enables pastoral teams to be ambitious about what they believe they can achieve for the young people in their care. It provides time to research different options and to make preparations, to ensure that new initiatives are implemented effectively. Decision making can be informed by the views of staff, parents, and learners. Learners can be encouraged to think about their long-term goals for their education and for their later lives.

JULY
Recognising Achievement
Value progress and success to inspire future achievements. 

As the summer holidays approach, it is important to not miss the opportunity to identify and recognise achievements. Recording and celebrating, where progress has been made, ensures that those achievements are not lost and can be used as foundations for further success in the future. Pastoral leaders and pastoral staff can take the opportunity to record and share the achievements and success from the previous year. Pastoral staff should identify where their work has had a positive impact, in making a difference in the progress and achievements of learners and share this information with the school community. It is even more important for young people, that their achievements are recognised and celebrated, before they are forgotten over the summer and the opportunity to provide motivation is missed.

AUGUST
Reflection
Taking time to think about priorities and to be clear about what is important.

For staff in pastoral roles, it is often difficult during a busy working week to find time to reflect on the goals we are trying to achieve for the benefit of the young people in our care. In term time pastoral staff rely on the structures and systems that have been established, to meet the different demands of young people, for support with their learning and personal development. The summer provides an opportunity to think about the values and beliefs that drive the work of pastoral staff. What are the priorities to be achieved from the resources available and how can they be used effectively to support young people? What are the challenges that pastoral staff and the pastoral systems in the school are likely to face in the future?  Are the current pastoral structures and systems appropriate for changing circumstances and demands being made on them? A period of reflection provides clarity about priorities and the motivation to approach challenges with confidence.

SEPTEMBER
High Expectations and clear routines
A fresh start with the opportunity to establish clear routines

The start of the academic year is the opportunity for pastoral staff to reinforce the values and beliefs of the school. This is the opportunity to adapt systems and routines, to ensure that they are appropriate for meeting the needs of all learners. There is a short ‘honeymoon’ period at the start of the academic year, when learners will accept changes and new initiatives, before they start to test them, to expose their weaknesses. It is important that during the first few weeks, that pastoral staff allocate time, to explain the reasons for any changes in routines or procedures and how learners will benefit from them being implemented. This achieves clarity about the high expectations, the school has for its learners and its determination to support them in achieving their full potential. It highlights the school’s determination to support all learners in developing the skills and positive attitudes that will enable them to achieve success. The challenge is to gain the support of the majority, so there is a clear understanding and support for the values and ethos of the school. This helps to create a culture where there is a focus each day on achieving academic goals and personal development.

OCTOBER
Developing Potential
Looking for opportunities to improve talents and skills
A challenge for pastoral leaders is to look for opportunities, where a small amount of effort will achieve maximum impact. A new initiative implemented now could be a real boost to raising achievement and supporting the personal development of young people. Including discussions about pastoral roles, in the performance management process for teachers and support staff, demonstrates that this work is important to the school and values the contribution that staff make. It is an opportunity to consider how the work of staff could be more effective in supporting the young people in their care. This is a good time to encourage learners to think about what additional efforts they could make to help them to make more progress in their learning and personal development. This places responsibility on individual learners to explore all options, for helping themselves to achieve their full potential and to prepare themselves for the challenges they will face in their later lives. Effective form tutoring can provide motivation for learners. This involves asking challenging questions about what they want to achieve and what actions they need to take to be successful.

NOVEMBER
Motivation and Well being
Encouragement that recognises opportunities to succeed and the different needs of individuals

In my experience, it is often this month when positive beliefs and ambitious goals start to be tested. The weather is getting worse, dark evenings make it more difficult to enjoy leisure time, more time is spent inside, and it will be several months before this gets better! This is the time for pastoral staff, who will have the same negative feelings as everybody else, to summon all their energy to focus on motivating and encouraging other people. Simple words of encouragement can have a huge impact on motivating young people and staff and make a difference in supporting well-being. At this time of year, it is even more important to remember the values and priorities agreed in September, so there is a sense of purpose for the daily work of staff in pastoral roles. It is important to keep the belief in the pastoral structures and systems, and to be confident that work done now will bring success later in the academic year.  Having empathy is important, to understand the different feelings and challenges for individuals and to ensure that well-being is a priority for staff and the young people they are working with. Thinking about each learner as an individual enables the school to provide appropriate support in response to their different needs.

DECEMBER
Celebration and recognition
Recognising progress made and success achieved. 

As the end of the calendar year approaches, when from my experience all staff and especially pastoral staff are tired and motivation is in short supply, it is a good time to focus on what progress has been made in the first term and to recognise and reward success. Recognising where success has been achieved is a real motivator for achieving more success in the future. Having your own achievements recognised or celebrating the achievements of other people, encourages a positive and ambitious response from individuals. This is true for both adults and young people. A celebration assembly or positive letter home to parents demonstrates what the school values and reinforces high expectations. Rewards need to be awarded, with clarity about the reasons why they are being given. They will then have a positive impact on raising self-esteem and the aspirations of individuals. Pastoral care and support for learners will be more effective, if the people in the process are recognised for the contribution and effort they make.

Phil Jones
National Chair
The National Association for Pastoral Care in Education
January 2021

AWARDS: Entry Opens for National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021

The National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021 Launched

Following the huge success of the first National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education last year, we are delighted to announce that entry for 2021 is now open.

The Awards scheme is the first and only in the UK to recognise great practice of pastoral care providers in the education sector.

We were blown away by the success of the first NAPCE Awards and it was never in doubt that we were going to return even bigger and better.

We’ve added a new category in International Contribution to Pastoral Care this year, a worthy addition to the seven existing classifications which proved so popular in 2020.

Even COVID-19 didn’t stop us last year as we hosted a very busy and exciting Presentation Evening on Zoom in September and with the vaccine roll-out in full swing we’ll be taking a call on whether to hold a physical or virtual event a bit later this year.

The closing date for all categories this year will be Monday May 24th, 2021, so don’t hang around, get your entries in now.

Just like last year, the finalists of the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education will be selected by an independent judging panel and invited to attend the ceremony on Friday, September 24th, 2021 to share the experience with peers and find out who wins each Award.

Speaking about the Awards, Phil Jones, Chair of NAPCE, said: “It is even more important in 2021 to recognise the pastoral heroes who have done so much to support the pastoral care of young people through the challenges presented by the global pandemic.

“Please take a few minutes to make a nomination to recognise people who have made a real difference.” 

Criteria for Each Category

Pastoral School of the Year
A school that can demonstrate a commitment to pastoral care and support for learners that makes a real difference in the progress and personal development of young people in the school.

Pastoral Team of the Year
A team that works in pastoral care and can demonstrate a determination to support young people to achieve their full potential and a positive impact on the young people they work with.

Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
A member of staff who works in pastoral care and who always makes the extra effort to support young people to enable them to become effective learners and achieve success.

Pastoral Leader of the Year
Has a passion for pastoral care that is shared with colleagues to inspire and motivate them to make a real difference in the lives of the young people they work with.

Pastoral Development of the Year
A pastoral initiative or idea that has achieved positive outcomes and has improved the learning experience and future life chances, for young people.

Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
An individual, group or organisation who through their actions have raised awareness about pastoral care or pastoral issues and encouraged positive improvements for the benefit of young people.

Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
A person, group or organisation that has made a real difference in pastoral care, for the benefit of young people.

International Contribution to Pastoral Care
An international school, organisation outside of the UK or an individual working in research or in an international school outside of the UK, that has promoted or delivered high quality pastoral care.

Any school or organisation can make a nomination for one or more of the categories. You do not need to be a member of NAPCE to make a nomination. Self-nominations are accepted.

Nominations are supported with information about how they meet the criteria for the category.

Nominations are for pastoral work during the 2020-21 academic year. The finalists and winners are selected by the judging panel of leading academics and practitioners in pastoral care and education. All finalists are invited to attend a presentation event when the winners are announced.

There is a prize of one hundred pounds for the school, university, or organisation that the winners represent, in each category, to support their future work in pastoral care. There are prizes and plaques for winners and certificates for finalists.

Nominations open on Monday 18th January and it is a good idea to make your nomination as soon as possible so you do not forget.

Activity Date 2021
Nominations Open Monday 18th January
Nominations Close Monday 24th May
Judging Completed Friday 25th June
Finalists informed Monday 28th June
Tickets for Presentation Available Monday 5th July
Invitations to attend Presentation Event sent Monday 5th July
Presentation Event Friday 24th September

To make your nomination

You can enter the NAPCE Awards here  https://napceawards.wufoo.com/forms/napce-awards-2021-entry-form/

Nominations are encouraged for awards in different categories from schools and educational establishments and you DO NOT need to currently be a member of NAPCE to take part.

FROM THE CHAIR: An update from NAPCE Chief Phil Jones

 

From the Chair with Phil Jones

“The start of a new year is an opportunity to look ahead and NAPCE has some exciting plans”.

That was what I wrote in my New Year message for the NAPCE newsletter in January 2020.

That article had pictures and information about NAPCE’s active involvement in conferences and other pastoral events in the previous year.

There were many plans to provide opportunities for our members to meet up at conferences and plans for other activities to raise NAPCE’s profile and involvement in the educational world.

What we had not planned for was a global pandemic and restrictions that prevented people from meeting up with each other.

Despite this unexpected situation NAPCE has continued to be active and to promote the importance of pastoral care as part of a young person’s education.

In many ways it has taken a pandemic to highlight that schools make a significant contribution to the socialisation, personal development and well-being of young people as well as supporting their academic progress to enable them to be successful in their future lives.

In 2020 NAPCE organised, for the first time, the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education, which recognised the hard work and achievements of people contributing to pastoral care.

The presentation event in the autumn was the first time that NAPCE had organised a virtual event, which was a huge success.

Our academic journal continues to be well respected around the world, with articles that share good practice and the latest thinking about pastoral care.

Despite the restrictions imposed on us all because of the pandemic NAPCE has seen an increase in its membership, more people are engaging with the Association through social media and there has been increased interest in contributing to the work of the NAPCE as a member of the national executive.

There is every reason to be confident that NAPCE will continue to make a valuable contribution to educational thinking and practice. With the arrival of vaccines, there is hope of people being able to meet up again soon.

In January NAPCE will be involved in the planning and delivery of ASCL’s annual conference for Pastoral Leaders. I will be delivering a virtual workshop, along with Maria O’Neil the founder of UK Pastoral Chat at 11-30 on Monday 25th January as part of this conference.

NAPCE has been involved in the planning and will be supporting Safer Internet Day, which this year takes place online on Tuesday, 9th February.

The Annual General Meeting takes place on Saturday, 27th March, which with the lockdown currently in place is likely to be an online event.

All NAPCE members are welcome to attend and details will be available soon.

The 2021 National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education has just been launched and will be important for recognising the ‘pastoral heroes’, during the pandemic. There are plans for a conference and awards presentation event and even if these must be virtual events, they will bring people together and celebrate good practice and new ideas.

I am pleased to welcome Anne and Susana who joined our administrative team in January. They will be working along with Mel to support the Association in working with its members to promote the importance of pastoral care and the difference it can make to a young person’s learning experience and future life chances.

They can be contacted on the following e-mail addresses.

I am also pleased to welcome the new members of the national executive.

  • Connor Acton
  • Dominic Riste
  • Luke Myer
  • Nadine Huseyin

I look forward to them being actively involved in the work of NAPCE as a member of the National Executive Committee and being able to meet them in person soon.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank all members of the NEC, the editorial board for the Journal and the team who provide the Association with administrative support for all your contributions and support for the work of NAPCE, through what has been a challenging time for everybody.

On behalf of NAPCE I would like to send my best wishes for a Happy New Year, which I hope will be a time when we can meet with people again and value the importance of that human contact.

Phil Jones
National Chair
The National Association for Pastoral Care in Education. 

MEET THE TEAM: Introducing New NAPCE Team Member Anne Jones

 

Introducing NAPCE’s Newest Team Member, Anne Jones

I wanted to introduce myself as I settle into my new role as the NAPCE administrator.

I am delighted to be part of NAPCE, having been on its periphery for so long and hearing about it from my husband Phil Jones!

I have just retired from teaching after 26 years in the job.

Before I went into teaching, I was a research Scientist and worked for The Schizophrenia Association of Great Britain, based at Bangor University and previously as a Molecular Biologist at Heidelberg University in Germany. I have two degrees – a BSc in Biochemistry and a BA with the Open University (which I did for fun when I first started teaching!)

I obtained my PGCE at Mansfield College Oxford and had a great time completing my training in a behavioural school in Oxford.

I will never forget the camping trip I went on with this school and the characters I met and supported. It was a real eye opener into the Pastoral needs of vulnerable young people.

My first school as a qualified teacher was in Basildon, where alongside Phil, I worked on the ‘2 Smart 4 Drugs’ and ‘Youth Voice’ projects.

These were truly inspirational and led me to a career in the Pastoral side of education. The students and colleagues I worked with in Basildon made me realise that teaching was the career for me and I made life-long friends there, who were incredible in their support and concern for the young people at the school.

I was a Head of Year for many years, following a year group throughout their time at The Sweyne Park School in Rayleigh. I enjoyed leading projects such as the BP Business and School Partnership Award, which we won alongside our Ford Partners.

I then worked in two schools in Brentwood where I worked on helping vulnerable students with vocational education, careers and work experience. This opened an avenue of making businesses aware of the help that they could give young people in supporting their education and I was lucky enough to speak at Rotary meetings and set up business partnerships.

I have always loved the Pastoral side of teaching and have been a form tutor for many different year groups and for Vertical Tutor groups. I delivered courses on ‘Being a Good Form Tutor’. However, it saddens me that Tutoring these days is veering more on the side of qualifications than on Pastoral care. I believe that children really need the support of Pastoral care, now more than ever!

I finished my teaching career as a Head of Physics. I retired from teaching this Christmas and am looking forward to being a part of the NAPCE team.

NAPCE Awards 2021 – Entry Now Open!

Following the huge success of the first National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education last year, we are delighted to announce that entry for 2021 is now open.

The Awards scheme is the first and only in the UK to recognise great practice of pastoral care providers in the education sector.

We were blown away by the success of the first NAPCE Awards and it was never in doubt that we were going to return even bigger and better.

We’ve added a new category in International Contribution to Pastoral Care this year, a worthy addition to the seven existing classifications which proved so popular in 2020.

Even COVID-19 didn’t stop us last year as we hosted a very busy and exciting Presentation Evening on Zoom in September and with the vaccine roll-out in full swing we’ll be taking a call on whether to hold a physical or virtual event a bit later this year.

The closing date for all categories this year will be Monday May 24th, 2021, so don’t hang around, get your entries in now.

Just like last year, the finalists of the National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education will be selected by an independent judging panel and invited to attend the ceremony on Friday, September 24th, 2021 to share the experience with peers and find out who wins each Award.

NAPCE is inviting nominations in the following categories;

Pastoral School of the Year
Pastoral Team of the Year
Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
Pastoral Leader of the Year
Pastoral Development of the Year
Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
International Contribution to Pastoral Care

You can enter the NAPCE categories here  https://napceawards.wufoo.com/forms/napce-awards-2021-entry-form/

Nominations are encouraged for awards in different categories from schools and educational establishments and you DO NOT need to currently be a member of NAPCE to take part.

NAPCE 2021 is an excellent opportunity to share good practice in pastoral care and through our social media, website and those of our partners, the Awards raises awareness of where pastoral support is making a real difference in the educational experience of young people.

The Awards also encourages new initiatives and ideas in pastoral care and will recognise the contributions being made to developing policy and practice in pastoral support.

This is an opportunity to recognise the impact the work of pastoral staff is having on the achievement and well being of young people.

The decisions about prize winners in each category will be made by a panel of invited professionals who work in pastoral care.

There will be a prize of £100.00 for the school or institution for the winners of each category and individuals will also be recognised for their achievements.

The criteria for the NAPCE awards are;

•Pastoral School of the Year
A school that can demonstrate a commitment to pastoral care and support for learners that makes a real difference in the progress and personal development of young people in the school

•Pastoral Team of the Year
A team that works in pastoral care and can demonstrate a determination to support young people to achieve their full potential and a positive impact on the young people they work with

•Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
A member of staff who works in pastoral care and who always makes the extra effort to support young people to enable them to become effective learners and achieve success

•Pastoral Leader of the Year
Has a passion for pastoral care that is shared with colleagues to inspire and motivate them to make a real difference in the lives of the young people they work with

•Pastoral Development of the Year
A pastoral initiative or idea that has achieved positive outcomes and has improved the learning experience and future life chances, for young people

•Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
An individual, group or organisation who through their actions have raised awareness about pastoral care or pastoral issues and encouraged positive improvements for the benefit of young people

•Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
A person, group or organisation that has made a real difference for the benefit of young people in the area of pastoral care

•International Contribution to Pastoral CareAn international school, organisation outside of the UK or an individual working in research or in an international school outside of the UK, that has promoted or delivered high quality pastoral care.

Nominations for the NAPCE Awards are welcome from member schools and institutions and from schools and institutions that are not currently members of NAPCE.

NAPCE News – December 2020

NAPCE News – December 2020

Making a positive difference to young people through pastoral care

Interested in joining the NAPCE team?
NAPCE is an organisation that depends mainly on volunteers of dedicated educational  professionals who have a particular interest in the personal, social and emotional development of young people. The organisation is overseen by a national executive who meet twice a year to plan and develop strategy. We have vacancies on the national executive at the moment and are looking to recruit new members from all areas of education. If you would be interested in joining the executive please visit the NAPCE website and fill in a Declaration of Interest form. If you have any questions or would like further information please email admin@napce.org

FEATURE ARTICLE: “Are Schools the Production Lines of the 21st Century?” – NAPCE Chair Phil Jones Looks at Making Young People the Priority for the Education System in the Future.

Are schools the production lines of the 21st century? Making the needs of young people the priority for the education system of the future.

As we approach the end of 2020 there is no doubt that this has been a difficult and challenging year for everybody working in education.

The positive response is to want some good to come out of a negative experience.

The hope is that this will inspire educationalists, to look for ways to improve young people’s learning experience in the future.

The unexpected challenges presented by the pandemic have exposed some of the realities about how our educational system works.

It is inevitable that this will encourage educationalists and everybody with an interest in education to question the priorities and purpose of our educational system.

This was illustrated by how the pandemic, impacted on the examination process in the summer of 2020 and questioned the relevance of the current education system in the country.

The purpose of the current education system, it can be argued, is to be a production line turning out workers for a capitalist economy.

Schools have accepted a role, similar to factories after the industrial revolution, where they produce the compliant and conforming members of society who can be employed in roles to generate wealth.

This system is sustained by national leaders, enforcing this view of the purpose of education being about raising standards, with the strategies of inspection, league tables and parental choice.

Thinking about the purpose of education in the rapidly changing world of the 21st century encourages educationalists to question if this view of an education system is meeting the real needs of modern society.

It is relevant to reflect on whether the workforce of the future will require compliant employees, or will it be more appropriate to develop qualities such as creativity, problem solving, and the ability to work with other people and share ideas, as being more important in the modern workplace.

Martin Illingworth in his recently published book, “Forget School”, argues that jobs in the future will be automated except for jobs that require creativity, emotional intelligence, or physical dexterity.

He calls for a curriculum that meets the needs of society and gives learners the best chance of participating (Illingworth 2020).

If this is true, then the implications for our schools is that the priority is not to enable learners to achieve standards and pass examinations.

It suggests that the role of the school in supporting the personal development of young people will become more important. Schools will have a role in developing the skills and attitudes that can then be demonstrated in the selection process for a job.

The task for schools will be to ensure a young person’s learning experience is relevant for making them employable in the modern world.

Schools will need to give more priority and invest time and resources in developing young people, that can make a positive contribution to society and to the economy.

There is a need for a collaborative approach to learning so young people can engage in collaborative problem solving (Illingworth 2020).

In the world of the 21st century, what you know becomes less important than the personal qualities that an individual can contribute. Google can find information at the press of a button.

This has implications for the design and implementation of relevant systems for the pastoral care and support of young people in schools in the future.

These pastoral systems of the future have a more important role than simply ensuring that young people in schools are compliant and conforming to meet the rules and expectations, to enable the school to achieve good examinational results.

Pastoral systems in schools have a role in developing personal qualities and skills, that can enable young people to sell themselves in the employment marketplace. “To be articulate these days is to be proficient online” (Illingworth 2020).

Pastoral systems and support provided for learners needs to make a real difference in developing the skills and attitudes that young people will need to be effective in the workplace and to make a positive contribution to society in the 21st century.

Schools and, in particular staff, working in pastoral roles need to be empowered to put the needs of young people at the heart of the learning process.

Providing time for pastoral work enables schools to invest valuable resources in supporting the learning experience of young people.

This needs to be deployed in a planned way, to ensure that these resources are being used to develop the personal qualities of the young people and prepare them for the workforce of the future and not on the production line of passing examinations.

“Remembering facts and passing examinations is not that useful anymore. Employers and clients are more interested in evidence of their online proficiency than in their examination results”. (Illingworth 2020).

Some of the possible responses to these challenges presented to schools, do not fit neatly into the curriculum boxes of subjects.

But pastoral systems have a more important role in meeting the more diverse needs of young people in preparing them for the demands of the modern world.

“Schools should be the perfect place to help children learn to collaborate”. (Illingworth 2020)

The pastoral systems of the future can provide schools with opportunities for young people to experience working collaboratively.

The challenge is not to focus on encouraging compliant and passive attitudes, because this approach supports the raising standards agenda.

The goal for pastoral systems in the modern school should be to encourage conformity but young people who challenge, question and clearly communicate their own views and opinions.

Pastoral care should be a dynamic process in schools, that encourages learners to develop the resilience, adaptability, and confidence to challenge ideas, that will enable them to be successful in the modern world and live fulfilled lives.

This focus on personal development in our education system is important for engaging young people in the learning process and to prepare a workforce for the country, that will be relevant for a modern society and economy.

As always these are my own thoughts but NAPCE would welcome your views and ideas.

Please follow NAPCE on Twitter (@NAPCE1.) Sharing our ideas means that we will emerge from the pandemic in a stronger position to focus our energy and expertise in making a difference in the future lives of young people.

I would like to take the opportunity to wish all our members and supporters on NAPCE, a Happy Christmas and to give my best wishes and hopes for a better year in education in 2021.

Phil Jones
National Chair
The National Association for Pastoral Care in Education

References

Illingworth, M. 2020. Forget School. Why young people are succeeding on their own terms and what schools can do to avoid being left behind, Carmarthen, Independent Thinking Press.

EVENT: A Report on the Very Latest Events Involving the National Association for Pastoral Care in Education

During the Pandemic NAPCE has continued to connect with pastoral care professionals, associations and supportive businesses who have a significant interest in pastoral care in schools.

Of course, many of the events that would have been in-person are now taking place online and, in fact, new events have been organised because of the communication potential of the internet.

We are very pleased to share a fresh update on the events which NAPCE has been, or will be, involved with recently.

The Festival of Learning 2020

The Festival of Learning is an online event organised by Blue Sky Education to support new members of the profession.

Leading educationalists shared their expertise in webinars form 17th November until 8th December. The topics included. Building your Resourcefulness, Mindfulness Tools, Effective Assessment, Using Outlook, How to Build Motivation for Learning, Parents as Partners, and desk Yoga.

More information about the programme for the festival can be found on the BlueSky Education website. (Festival of Learning · BlueSky Learning)

One of the educationalists invited to present a webinar was our National Chair, Phil Jones. Phil presented a webinar with the title ‘Pastoral Care and Remote Learning’ and over 150 professionals form different parts of the country and around the world signed up to participate in this live event.

The webinar explored the pastoral demands that schools face during remote learning and what lessons can be learnt from the experience for improving future delivery of pastoral care and support for young people.

More information about the webinar presented by Phil Jones is available by following the link https://blueskylearning.co.uk/courses/47

Safer Internet Day 

NAPCE is pleased to be invited for the first time to be involved in the planning of Safer Internet Day which takes place on Tuesday 9th February 2021.

Phil Jones our National Chair has been attending meetings to contribute to the planning of the 2021 event. 170 countries around the world participate in safer Internet days to promote the safe use of the internet by young people.

The aim for the UK event is to inspire a national conversation about using technology respectfully, critically, and creatively, reaching more young people than ever before.

The 2021 Safer Internet Day will be a virtual event and will include a live streamed presentation hosted by BT from the BT studios. Attendance is by invitation only.

It will include information about the latest research and contributions from government and industry leaders and films from schools.  The focus for the 2021 campaign is on an ‘internet that we trust’.

Resources are available online by visiting the website at www.saferinternetday.org.uk.

The resources include packs for schools with ideas for assemblies and lessons with presentation slides.

Safer Internet Films are available for different age groups and for parents.

More details are available by following the link below.

https://www.saferinternet.org.uk/safer-internet-day/safer-internet-day-2021/i-work-young-people

Organisations can register as a supporter organisation as NAPCE has done and share your plans for how you will be supporting Safer internet day 2021
https://www.saferinternet.org.uk/2021/register

The social media links for the event are
Twitter
@uk-SIC
Instagram
@uk-SIC
www.facebook.com/saferinternetuk

Hashtag for the 2021 campaign is #AnInternetWeTrust

NAPCE is proud to be supporting the 2021 event, which is probably more important than ever because of the impact of the pandemic and the increasing amount of time young people are spending online. This is clearly an issue, that will be important for everybody with an interest in pastoral care and the well being of young people, and we hope you will give your support for the campaign to help make the internet a safe place in the future.

Association of School and College Leaders Annual Conference for Pastoral Leaders

NAPCE has for the last few years been a partner with ASCL in the planning and organisation of the annual conference for pastoral leaders. This year the conference will be a virtual event and will take place over several days in January 2021. Details about the conference can be found on the ASCL website by following this link,  https://www.ascl.org.uk/pastoral.

The Twitter hashtag for the conference is – #asclcare and @ASCL_UK. Confirmed speakers include Geoff Barton ASCL General Secretary and Margaret Mulholland the SEND and inclusion specialist for ASCL.

In a year that has brought extraordinary challenges for everyone the conference will provide the latest thinking and ideas about how pastoral leaders can respond. NAPCE Chair, Phil Jones will be presenting a workshop in partnership with Maria O Neil from UK Pastoral Chat looking at the impact of remote learning on pastoral care policy and practice.

This workshop is planned to take place on Monday January 25th between 11-30 and 12-30. Please visit the ASCL website for information about how to book a place for the conference.

The National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2021 organised by NAPCE

Following the huge success of the 2020 Awards despite the challenges presented by the pandemic NAPCE is pleased to announce that nominations for the 2021 National Awards for pastoral Care in Education organised by NAPCE will open soon.

After the additional challenges from the pandemic for professionals working in pastoral care this year it is more important than ever that the work and achievements of these people are recognised.

We hope that you will be involved by taking the time to nominate people who deserved to be recognised for the difference they make in the learning experience and future life chances of young people.

The categories for 2021 will be,

  • Pastoral School of the Year
  • Pastoral Team of the Year
  • Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year
  • Pastoral Leader of the Year
  • Pastoral Development of the Year
  • Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care
  • Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care
  • International Contribution to Pastoral Care

Please follow NAPCE on Twitter at NAPCE@NAPCE one for the latest news about the 2021 Awards and information about when the Awards will be launched and how to nominate.

Thank you to sponsors who have already confirmed that they would like to support one of the awards in 2021.

If you are interested in being a sponsor for the 2021 Awards, please contact NAPCE at admin@napce.org.uk

EVENT UPDATE: The latest on the ASCL Online Conference for Pastoral Leaders in January

 

Conference for Pastoral Leaders 2021 with ASCL

NAPCE is very proud to be partnering again with the Association of School & College Leaders for a new online Conference in January 2021 and we are delighted to provide an update on the content of the event.

The ASCL Conference For Pastoral Leaders 2021 – entitled “Reaching Out” – will take place on the internet across three days and will address the key issue of breaking barriers for disadvantaged learners.

Speakers at the event – on January 19th, 25th and 26th – include ASCL General Secretary Geoff Barton, CEO of Bite Back 2030 James Toop and the Alliance Director of Bite Back 2030 Melanie Renowden.

Also taking to the virtual podium at the event will be Dr Carlene Firmin MBE, Head of Contextual Safeguarding Programme at the University of Bedfordshire and Gavin Oattes, Managing Director and Owner of Tree of Knowledge.

Additionally, NAPCE Chair, Phil Jones will be presenting a workshop in partnership with Maria O’ Neill from UK Pastoral Chat looking at the impact of remote learning on pastoral care policy and practice.

This workshop is planned to take place on January 25th between 11.30am and 12.30pm.

About the Event

In a year that has brought extraordinary challenges for everyone, the support for vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people continues to grow in complexity.With a great deal of uncertainty about what the months ahead may hold, the number of students facing barriers which impact their learning and development will grow.

Suitable for leaders across all phases, our 2021 Conference for Pastoral Leaders will focus on a range of issues, including wellbeing, safeguarding, the disadvantage gap, RSHE plus pastoral care and remote provision.

How it works

This conference will be delivered completely online through keynotes and interactive workshops. All sessions will be available to watch live or later via recordings.

Keynotes will take place on Tuesday 19 January from 10am – 12noon

There will be five workshops delivered across Monday 25 and Tuesday 26 January.

Webinar Requirements 

To attend this webinar live, you will need to ensure  you have access to a computer or device that meets the system requirements available here.

If you cannot attend live you will receive a copy of the recording, links to any resources discussed, and the opportunity to submit questions.

Fee

£125 +VAT per delegate
£250 +VAT for a school licence

Multi-academy trusts and other institutions with multiple sites should email pd@ascl.org.uk for a quote.

To book tickets click this link https://www.ascl.org.uk/pastoral

GOOD PRACTICE: The Latest Instalment in our New Series Focusing on Success Stories in Pastoral Care from NAPCE Award Contestants

 

Welcome to the latest in a series of “Good Practice” reports from finalists and winners of the NAPCE Awards 2020.

Every month we share examples of some of the greatest work within pastoral care in the UK education sector, following the first NAPCE Awards.

In this latest edition, we are featuring The Grove School in Tottenham, London, a school for young people aged 5-19 who have a primary diagnosis of autism.

The Grove School was the winner of the prestigious Pastoral School of the Year award at the NAPCE Awards 2020.

The following information was submitted to NAPCE by the school and we are very keen to share it with you.

The Grove School caters for children and young people 5–19 who have a primary diagnosis of autism, some pupils have additional needs.

Our vision to ‘Inspire Excellence – Champion Potential and Empower Learning’ is simple and founded on a desire to make a difference.

We aim to enable every pupil to flourish by encouraging and building on unique strengths and interests, supporting individuals to develop and deploy strategies to manage and cope with challenges, enabling them to reach their full potential.

We recognise that everyone is different, therefore the individual is always our starting point.

The school employs a full time Pastoral Lead who works as part of the Senior Leadership Team to champion individual wellbeing.

The Pastoral Lead has developed programmes which focus on pupil’s wellbeing and mental health focussing on student voice.

Both the Pastoral Lead and Headteacher champion mental health and positive wellbeing across the school.

In addition to academic achievement, the focus is on social, emotional and personal development. Developed by ensuring every pupil has opportunities to strengthen independence and living skills; key to building their confidence and self-esteem.

Our pupils have access to a team of skilled teachers, therapists, and professionals who work together to ensure each pupil has a learning programme tailored to their specific needs; led by our Deputy Headteacher.

Families are able to engage within their community, attend workshops and have access to a bespoke package of one-to-one family support which can and does include work within the home.

Support and advice is offered to ensure families feel confident and informed about their child’s needs and future prospects.

Central to this partnership is our commitment to working alongside families to support the progress and well-being of all pupils. We strive to develop the very best outcomes for everyone at The Grove. 

NAPCE News – November 2020


FEATURE ARTICLE: “Teaching during COVID-19” – the Challenges of Educating During the Pandemic with NAPCE Officer John Hunt

Educational Challenges During COVID-19 By John Hunt

The challenges of teaching throughout the COVID-19 pandemic have been varied and wide ranging.

With bubbles, online lessons, hybrid lessons, tracking and tracing, social distancing, masks in communal areas and strict teacher zones (or ‘the technical area’ as one colleague called it, which I liked!), it is easy to forget what ‘normal’ was before we were collectively hit by these absolutely necessary but slightly strange measures.

It is not, however, teaching that I wish to continue to focus on in this short article.

It is not the academic progress of our students, the loss of lesson time, the online learning or even the challenges that we as teachers face, all of which I feel have been given significant air time already.

I want to explore an observation I have made over these first ten weeks and would truly welcome any feedback of similar or contradicting experiences.

As a pastoral leader in a school, I still have the benefit and pleasure of seeing every year group, every day, when on playground duty and supporting staff across the school.

Year groups are kept separate, with staggered start times, break times and lunchtimes in order to maintain a safe distance between students.

While this has presented a significant challenge in terms of allocating duties, from a behaviour perspective this structure has had an undeniably positive impact in many ways.

Less students are out at break and lunch time, there is less physical space in school for staff to monitor at any one time due to the limited number of students needing to be supervised, Heads of Year can pick up students knowing exactly where their entire year group will be at one certain time and so on.

However, it has raised a question for me as I have observed our younger students: what impact is the lack of usual socialisation having upon these young people?

In September every year, Year 7 students join schools with a mix of excitement and trepidation.

No matter how great a transition programme they have experienced, these feelings are completely natural and I’m sure most of us remember them!

No longer are they ‘The Year 6’s’, the oldest kids in the school, the kids that know everything, the kids that know how it all works, the big fish in a small pond.

They are on a bigger site, equipped with all of the stationery imaginable, requiring a map to get around, with their new planner, with a much larger number of students and staff, with all kinds of new routines, experiences and issues to navigate.

They meet the older year groups and suddenly realise they are very much the smaller fish in a very big pond! Not this year, though, and it is very noticeable indeed…

In my experience, Year 7’s learn very quickly what is and is not socially acceptable on a secondary school playground!

The initial excitable behaviours of break time play, ticking, chasing etc. stops relatively quickly (often after they have accidentally bumped into a group of Year 10 boys!) Not this year, though…

At the time of writing, I find current Year 7 to be the ‘youngest’ of this year group I have ever seen in terms of their interactions with each other and with staff.

They are certainly a unique Year 7, in that they have not yet come into contact with any older students; they are in a strange limbo of having started secondary school but not yet having the full secondary experience.

They have not gone through the same rites of passage that almost all Year 7/ First year students before them have done and I find this genuinely interesting as I watch and monitor their behaviours during recreational time in school.

It has made me question what it is that sees young people lose this urge to play so publicly once joining secondary; is there anything we could have done differently to allow our youngest students to feel more comfortable in doing so?

Do the social norms in secondary schools prevent our youngest students from expressing themselves in this way? Do they want to behave like this every year but feel unable as a result of the cultural norms developed in schools over the years?

The evidence I’ve seen this term so far would certainly suggest so!

It is probably not unreasonable to think that their entire first secondary school year might be spent like this – separate break times and lunch times to the wider school.

I am keen to see how this develops over time and, when/if we return to ‘normal’ (whatever that was), I’ll be watching very closely to see how their delayed introduction to the wider school population goes… How will they cope? How will our older students respond to these younger students?

In the meantime, I hope that they continue to show the joyful exuberance they have brought with them from primary school. While I am 100% a secondary teacher and not at all used to seeing this behaviour on a secondary school playground, it certainly has its charms.
John Hunt
NAPCE Officer & Pastoral Leader

EVENT: NAPCE Partners with ASCL for Online Conference in January for Pastoral Leaders

 

Conference for Pastoral Leaders 2021 with ASCL

NAPCE is very proud to be partnering again with the Association of School & College Leaders for a new online Conference in January 2021.

The ASCL Conference For Pastoral Leaders 2021 – entitled “Reaching Out” – will take place on the internet across three days and will address the key issue of breaking barriers for disadvantaged learners.

Speakers at the event – on January 19th, 25th and 26th – include ASCL General Secretary Geoff Barton, CEO of Bite Back 2030 James Toop and the Alliance Director of Bite Back 2030 Melanie Renowden.

Additional speakers will be announced soon.

About the Event

In a year that has brought extraordinary challenges for everyone, the support for vulnerable and disadvantaged children and young people continues to grow in complexity.With a great deal of uncertainty about what the months ahead may hold, the number of students facing barriers which impact their learning and development will grow.

Suitable for leaders across all phases, our 2021 Conference for Pastoral Leaders will focus on a range of issues, including wellbeing, safeguarding, the disadvantage gap, RSHE plus pastoral care and remote provision.

How it works

This conference will be delivered completely online through keynotes and interactive workshops. All sessions will be available to watch live or later via recordings.

Keynotes will take place on Tuesday 19 January from 10am – 12noon

There will be five workshops delivered across Monday 25 and Tuesday 26 January.

Webinar Requirements 

To attend this webinar live, you will need to ensure  you have access to a computer or device that meets the system requirements available here.

If you cannot attend live you will receive a copy of the recording, links to any resources discussed, and the opportunity to submit questions.

Fee

£125 +VAT per delegate
£250 +VAT for a school licence

Multi-academy trusts and other institutions with multiple sites should email pd@ascl.org.uk for a quote.

To book tickets click this link https://www.ascl.org.uk/pastoral

FROM THE CHAIR: NAPCE Chief Phil Jones Looks Ahead to an Educational ‘Reset’ in 2021

The 2021 Education “Reset”

This year in education has been an exhausting challenge to cope with the unexpected.

The focus in schools has been on operational responses to the challenges presented by the pandemic, alongside all the usual challenges that schools face in any normal year.

Schools have had to adapt their practice to ensure that they are providing a safe learning environment for staff and learners.

The daily priority has been to teach young people as much as possible, as well as possible, in the middle of a global pandemic.

There has not been time for the luxury of creative thinking or developing new initiatives, to find exciting ways to improve the learning experience, which is often what gives educationalists working in schools such job satisfaction.

Old Moore’s Almanac has been published since 1697 and it uses astrology to make predictions for the coming year.

It may seem strange to be, ‘looking to the stars’ for inspiration and hope at this difficult time.

I have been reading the latest edition and it does encourage you the reflect on our experiences this year and to start looking forward to the opportunities that 2021 may bring for education.

Old Moore’s Almanac calls 2021 the year of ‘the reset’.

This is a term that I have heard in the last few weeks following the declaration that Joe Biden is the winner of the US presidential election even though that is still contested by the current resident of the White House.

It also seems relevant with the encouraging news emerging about the search for a vaccine. Published in June 2020 Old Moore’s Almanac commented.

“This is the right time to change the ways that the world has been working for everybody’s sake. The reset is upon us and there is no turning back”.

The concept of ‘the reset’ is useful for reflecting on the future of pastoral care and support for learners in our schools.

The pandemic has seen an increase in online learning, especially in higher education but also in schools. It is likely that this trend will continue and we will see an increasing use of technology to support learning.

Pastoral systems are likely to be under increased pressure to support young people, to become effective as independent learners, to be able to take advantage of all the opportunities provided by the developments in technology.

At the same time, the sharing of ideas and the need for collaborative approaches to problem solving will require pastoral systems, to encourage the personal development of young people to enable them to be successful at working in teams.

A new book, published recently, “Forget School. Why young people are succeeding on their own terms and what schools can do to avoid being left behind “, encourages educationalists to consider the relevance of how schools are currently organised for meeting the needs of young people in the modern world.

One review of the book comments.
Forget School argues that education for the 21st century must focus on the road ahead of us and not to teach through the rear-view mirror”.

(Mick Cannell, PGDE English Tutor, School of Education, University of Sheffield)

Thinking about the relevance of education in the future encourages professionals working in pastoral roles to consider the purpose of pastoral care and support for learners in the modern school.

It could be argued that currently pastoral care structures and systems in schools focus on encouraging compliance and conformity, to enable the school to achieve good results.

Schools have been left behind because they are operating with a crowd control mentality” 
(Illingworth 2020)

The question is, does this approach provide young people with the skills and attitudes they will need to be successful, in response to the challenges they will face in their future lives in the 21st century.

Pastoral systems that value the passive learner, are not going to make it a priority, to develop the skills and positive attitudes, needed to achieve success in the modern workplace.

Perhaps what is more relevant is an approach to pastoral care and support for learners, that encourages young people to question and challenge ideas and to be confident about working independently and as a member of a team, to find creative solutions to difficult problems.

This requires a change in beliefs about what is the purpose of pastoral care and support for learners in schools. Good results and academic achievement are important for a young person’s future live chances but if developing confidence and self-belief are a priority for pastoral systems, then learners are more likely to achieve their full potential.

The skills of problem solving, creative thinking and effective communication are likely to be more important in the workplace of the future and this requires ‘a reset’ in the approach to pastoral care and support for learners in our schools.

Please share your thoughts and ideas by visiting the NAPCE Twitter page at NAPCE@NAPCE1

Phil Jones
National Chair
The National Association for Pastoral Care in Education

References
Illingworth, Martin. (2020) Forget School. Why young people are succeeding on their own terms and what schools can do to avoid being left behind. Independent thinking press. Carmarthen, Wales.
Moore,Francis, (2020) Old Moore’s Almanac 2021, W Foulsham and Co Ltd , Croydon

GOOD PRACTICE: The Latest Instalment in our New Series Focusing on Success Stories in Pastoral Care from NAPCE Award Contestants

 

Welcome to the latest in a series of “Good Practice” reports from finalists and winners of the NAPCE Awards 2020.

Every month we share examples of some of the greatest work within pastoral care in the UK education sector, following the first NAPCE Awards.

In this new edition, we are featuring Eileen Pavey of Litcham School, a mixed all-through school in Kings Lynn, Norfolk.

Eileen was a finalist in the Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care category at the NAPCE Awards 2020.

The following information was submitted to NAPCE by the school and we are very keen to share it with you.

Eileen Pavey, Litcham School – NAPCE Awards 2020 Finalists

My aspiration to support others feels innate.

I have helped to establish the pastoral culture which is deeply embedded into our school and is fundamental in allowing our students to thrive.

Our ethos is built on trusted relationships; with students, families and the wider community and is something that I am extremely proud of.

Alongside Head of Year 7 and 8, I am the transition lead at Litcham School. I offer an array of student support whilst effectively coordinating the pastoral team, outside agency input, and our students who run groups and offer fantastic peer support.

We encourage our young people to talk about their thoughts and feelings.

As a Mental Health First Aider, I cascade training so that everyone can offer the quality care needed for our pupils to develop resilience, flourish, succeed and aspire.

Our students leave as well-rounded citizens and are aware that it’s natural to seek support; we offer a pastoral toolbox for life.

The success of our pastoral teamwork has been recognised by inspectors who reported that the ‘care and support for pupils are outstanding’.

Young people can witness our own struggles. Four years ago my 25 year old son Sam passed away; I have been blessed with such genuine, kind, whole school support.

In Sam’s memory I have set up a charity called ‘Sam’s Fund’ and the generosity has been overwhelming-over £100k has been raised towards a new school pavilion!

We end the year with the entire school taking part in Sam’s Run. A time to remember everyone we have loved and lost.

The atmosphere of togetherness and care is incredible.
I dedicate my wonderful NAPCE nomination to all at Litcham School – staff, students, parents and the wider community; our special Litcham family which I am so incredibly proud to be a part of.

I have added a quote from one of my wonderful Year 7 tutors Josh, who joined Litcham in September 2019:

‘Eileen is an extremely positive and supportive Head of Year who always offers her ear to students and staff alike.

“Her office door is always open and Eileen always makes you feel welcome; whatever else she has going on is put on pause so that she can advise and support.

“As an NQT and Form Tutor, Eileen’s encouragement and assistance has been invaluable to myself and the students this year’.

Eileen Pavey
Litcham School
Head of Year 7 & 8, Senior Pastoral Care Manager and Deputy safeguarding Lead

This picture shows a pull from Litcham School overcoming fears and achieving a zip line drop.

NAPCE News – October 2020

NAPCE News – October 2020

Making a positive difference to young

people through pastoral care

Interested in joining the NAPCE team?
NAPCE is an organisation that depends mainly on volunteers of dedicated 
educational professionals who have a particular interest in the personal, 
social and emotional development of young people. The organisation is 
overseen by a national executive who meet twice a year to plan and 
develop strategy. We have vacancies on the national executive at the 
moment and are looking to recruit new members from all areas of education. 
If you would be interested in joining the executive please visit the NAPCE 
website and fill in a Declaration of Interest form. If you have any questions 
or would like further information please email admin@napce.org

AWARDS REPORT: First Ever NAPCE Awards Hailed a Huge Success

NAPCE AWARDS PRESENTATION 2020 – A Report

The National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education organised for the first time in 2020 had its presentation event on the 24th September.

The event was launched to recognise the outstanding achievements of staff and institutions in pastoral care across the UK education sector.

The inaugural celebration took place online because of the pandemic and more than 100 people attended this virtual presentation to recognise the achievements of people working in pastoral roles to support young people and their learning.

Nominations for the Awards came from all parts of the UK and included representation from primary schools, middle schools, secondary schools, special schools, and Higher Education.

Although participants were unable to meet in person, many of the guests took the opportunity to dress up for the occasion and some of them joined the event in groups with appropriate social distancing of course.

The guest speaker for the evening was Geoff Barton the General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders. Other speakers on the evening included, Phil Jones, National Chair of the National Association for Pastoral Care in Education (NAPCE) and Professor Stan Tucker, Editor of the journal ‘Pastoral Care in Education.

They also made a contribution to the awards as judges along with Professor Richard Pring, from Oxford University and Associate Professor, Anne Emerson, from Nottingham University.

The Host for the evening was Victoria Bownes, a member of the NAPCE National Executive.

The first award of the evening was for Pastoral School of the Year and this was sponsored by BlueSkyEducation.

This award was for a school that can demonstrate a commitment to pastoral care and support for learners that makes a real difference in the progress and personal development of young people in the school.

The names of the five finalists were read out and it was then announced that Grove School was the winner. The Grove School, in Tottenham, caters for children and young people 5–19 who have a primary diagnosis of autism, some pupils have additional needs. Their vision to ‘Inspire Excellence – Champion Potential and Empower Learning’ is simple and founded on a desire to make a difference.

Each child has a learning programme tailored to their specific needs and there is a focus on engaging families. The second award was in the category of Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year and this award was sponsored by the Times Educational Supplement.

This award recognises A member of staff who works in pastoral care and who always makes the extra effort to support young people to enable them to become effective learners and achieve success. The winner was Dominic Riste who was nominated by his school, All Saints Catholic School and Technology College in Dagenham, Essex.

The nomination said that Dominic, champions aspiration and self – management achieving buy-in from his pupils with engaging competitions and rewarding events. He leads his year group with an open door, never raises his voice and targets vulnerable groups who he turns around from being disengaged to engaged.

The next award was for Pastoral Leader of the Year and was sponsored by Taylor and Francis.

This recognises a person who has a passion for pastoral care, that is shared with colleagues to inspire and motivate them to make a real difference in the lives of the young people they work with.

The winner was Sarah Freeman nominated by her school, The Park Community School in Barnstaple in Devon. Sarah has been a Head of House for 14 years.  During this time, she has impacted positively, on thousands of students going above and beyond to support students and their families.  She has always been keen to support local causes for local families such as foodbanks, shelter, and respite care.

The nominations for the award for Pastoral Development of the Year sponsored by NAPCE were announced. This award is for a pastoral initiative or idea that has achieved positive outcomes and has improved the learning experience and future life chances, for young people. The 2020 winner of this award was Anneliese Walker form Nidderdale High School in Harrogate. Anneliese developed the Harmony Project for year 10 girls involved in fallouts, unkindness online and bullying.

The award for Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care was also sponsored by NAPCE. This award recognises the achievements of person, group or organisation that has made a real difference for the benefit of young people in the area of pastoral care.

The winner in 2020 was Tor Bank School in Dundonald in Northern Ireland. Tor Bank is a special school with 190 pupils who have severe or profound and multiple learning difficulties aged between 3 and 19. the outstanding work in relation to bereavement is very much a whole-school intervention, tackling this important yet challenging topic right across the school in an age-appropriate manner.

While most school-based bereavement work is reactive and targeted at those directly impacted by a recent bereavement, Tor Bank has also adopted a pro-active, whole-school approach which is both pro-active and responsive, inclusive of everyone in the school community andfocused on individual need.

The award for Pastoral Team of the Year, was next on the programme and this was sponsored by The Thrive Approach.

This award recognises the achievements of a team that works in pastoral care and can demonstrate a determination to support young people to achieve their full potential and a positive impact on the young people they work with.

The winners in 2020 were the pastoral team from Cardinal Newman Catholic High School, in Warrington in Cheshire. The school is supported by an outstanding non-teaching pastoral care team.

They offer support to students experiencing a variety of challenges: from bereavement counselling from our Chaplain, through Mental Health and Bullying support from our pastoral managers, to our Inclusion Manager offering support groups using trauma informed practice, and our Attendance Officer and Librarian. The final award of the evening was for Raising Awareness about Pastoral Care and this was sponsored by, The Association of School and College Leaders.

This award is for an individual, group or organisation who through their actions have raised awareness about pastoral care or pastoral issues and encouraged positive improvements for the benefit of young people.

The winner was Sean Henn from St Phillips School, in Chessington in Surrey. Sean has published a beautifully written and beautiful account of an intervention with a student in social emotional and mental health provision.

Once all the winners had been announced there was an opportunity to congratulate them with a virtual glass of champagne or in some cases a real glass of something alcoholic even though it was a school night! Some of the comments on the chat line included.

  • “A huge congratulations to the Grove School from all of us at BlueSky”.
  • “I think there are so many stories that everyone should be writing to NAPCE about so we can share your incredible hard work!”
  • “Well done Nidderdale-what an impact you have had on so many lives”.
  • “It is so inspiring to hear theses examples of great pastoral care. Fantastic”.
  • “From the Grove School. Well done Tor Bank”.
  • “Well done NAPCE making so many pastoral heroes supported and recognised in our most challenging times”.
  • “It has been so uplifting to hear the stories and see so many dedicated professionals. who make a huge difference in their field. Together we change lives and thank you and the NAPCE team for getting this together”.
  • “Best wishes everyone and thanks for inviting the ASCL team tonight. An uplifting evening”.
  • “Well done everyone and thanks for organising such a great event”.
  • “Amazing work by all the finalists-congratulations to you all form the team at BlueSky and thank you to all for all the support you give young people in your schools”.
  • “Congratulations to everyone. There really is phenomenal work, passion, and commitment across the country. Well done to everyone”.
  • “Thank you NAPCE”

Phil Jones, National Chair of NAPCE, said. “We are really pleased to have organised these awards to give the recognition that people working in pastoral care deserve. The presentation event has shown that professionals working in pastoral care can be proud of the support and care they provide for young people and the difference it makes in their achievement at school and in their future lives. NAPCE is already looking forward to the 2021 awards and continuing to raise awareness of the positive impact effective pastoral care and support can make on supporting young people to achieve their full potential.  Thank you to our sponsors, judges and especially the schools and individuals nominated for the difference you are making in young people’s lives.”

Information about nominations for the 2021 National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education will be available soon.

National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education 2020 – The Winners

Pastoral School of the Year – The Grove School
Pastoral Member of Staff of the Year – Dominic Riste, All Saints Catholic School & Technology College
Pastoral Leader of the Year – Sarah Freeman, The Park Community School
Pastoral Development of the Year – Anneliese Walker – Nidderdale High School
Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care – Tor Bank School
Pastoral Team of the Year –  Cardinal Newman Catholic High School
Raising Awareness About Pastoral Care – Sean Henn, The Berne Institute

ARTICLE: NAPCE Officer Dr Max Biddulph Reflects on His 45 Years of Pastoral Care in Education

 

Bookends: Reflections on 45 years of pastoral care in Education

The 30 September, 2020 was my final day in full time employment at the end of a career in Education spanning 45 years and I’ve been thinking a lot recently about the transition into retirement that I’m currently making, hence this opportunity to share some reflections with you.

An image that comes to mind is one of the ‘bookends’ of my professional experience.

One ‘bookend’ comprises the moment when I first stepped into a classroom as a PGCE student from the University of Newcastle upon Tyne in November, 1975.

My teaching practice was in a very white working-class secondary school at the edge of the city, where I taught English to a bunch of very lively 14 year olds.

At that time, I was only 7 years their senior. When tutors come to observe, lessons are always memorable and in one I used the technology of the time to play a cassette tape of that Beatles track ‘Lucy in the sky with diamonds’.

We all got very ‘creative’ together, it was rather ‘hip’ and we had a laugh. The only problem was, being a non-Geordie, I could barely understand a word they said! I remember being touched by the poetry and prose they wrote in response to this lesson. The humanity oozed from text written in biros and fountain pens.

Forty-five years later I encountered my other bookend, working as an Associate Professor of Education and Counselling in the University of Nottingham.

Seven months into the global coronavirus pandemic, my final teaching session was an online team-building workshop delivered via MS Teams to MBA (Masters in Business Administration) students from the unlikely surroundings of my loft at home.

The geographical locations of participants in the workshop was mind boggling, ranging from China, India and Dubai in the east to Mexico in the west and given the associated time differences, I found it uplifting to realise that participants had gone to extraordinary lengths to be present, including not going to bed.

I guess Education is an optimistic project, it’s a hope for a different future in bleak times. That said, embarking on a programme of study always generates a mix of feelings in people ranging from excitement to fear and our newly arrived international students are experiencing an additional layer of challenge of having to quarantine for fourteen days.

Imagine not knowing the city, the culture, the nuances of the language and it being too early in their experience to have established much of a network of friends to access day to day necessities.

So standing back from these two bookends, what are my insights about being an educator and the implications for pastoral care?

Firstly, it’s mind boggling to consider these two snap shots and the huge distance time-wise, society-wise, culture-wise and technology-wise that separates them.

Although the medium of interaction i.e. f2f versus online is clearly very different, there is one common denominator that links the two i.e. the need to build and nurture relationships with those being educated.

Looking back at my initial teacher education it was necessarily pragmatic, concerning itself with the basics of simply being in a classroom and delivering a lesson.

With the benefit of hindsight I realise I stumbled across the more sophisticated skills of nurturing really by chance through trial and error as my career unfolded.

In my time I have sat with young people who have arrived at our school in the morning to find half of it destroyed by fire overnight. I have listened to others who have shared the painful experience of looking for their identity. I have sat with university students who have received devastating news regarding the death of a child thousands of miles away without the financial means to return home to grieve.

In these situations of such raw emotion I realised had to follow my instincts in delivering the compassion and support required.

I felt I just did my best at the time. As educators I think that’s what we do, listen and hold the situation, carry on and walk along side.

Up until recently, there have not been many opportunities to gauge the impact of the pastoral interventions I was making but that changed with the advent of Facebook and then my retirement which released a flood of feedback.

Will you allow me to share some insights and put modesty aside?

Individuals who I taught forty years ago tracked me down and told me things like ‘I was the only person who listened to them’ and ‘you made a huge impact on me at the time’.

The originators of this feedback I now realise, were far more insightful about me as a person than I could have guessed.

I had never imagined that I would work in a university and I can only say what an enormous privilege that has been.

The ‘privilege’ has manifested itself in many different ways ranging from travelling to other parts of the world to teach to experiencing the ‘privilege’ of just ‘being’ with other people, hearing their stories and being let into their inner worlds.

I can only say that this has been a profoundly humbling and educative experience, hence my conclusion that being involved in pastoral care is not a one way street, that there is a pay off in terms of our own lsome of our needs for altruism being met.

So what would I say to newly qualified teachers who may be stepping into this world for the first time this autumn?

My first observation is the simple fact that despite the changing technological environment, drive to get results etc., one thing remains constant and that is that ‘relationship’ matters.

How to be in the relationship with those being educated requires the ability to move between roles which in my experience took me across a wide spectrum ranging from night-club bouncer to counsellor.

The latter points to something really key, which is the ability to ‘hear’ other people, and I am meaning this in a Rogerian sense i.e. to hear the emotional content as well as the factual content of someone’s message.

The case of my workshop student experiencing quarantine is a case in point. His distress was palpable and there to be heard. Lockdown changed the experience of many of our students in Nottingham who after months of isolation were craving interaction and attention, even if this could only be done online.

So this brings me to final point which is that the missing bit from the pastoral care section of my PGCE manual in the 1970s, which is that I should expect to be a companion in the many educational journeys of those with whom I walked alongside. I think I’m really going to miss that.

Max Biddulph
NEC Officer, NAPCE

FROM THE CHAIR: Thoughts on Pastoral Care for Remote Learning with NAPCE Chief Phil Jones

Pastoral Care for Remote Learning

On October 6th Ofsted published evidence from visits to schools between, 14th and 18th September. The purpose of these visits was to explore four questions.

  1. What is the current state of children’s school education?
  2. How have children been affected by schools’ closures, to most children?
  3. How are schools planning to maintain standards in education through the pandemic?
  4. What are schools doing with their COVID-19 catch up funding?

The report recognises that the findings, may not be representative because the schools involved volunteered for visits from Ofsted.

Ofsted will be making further visits to schools and promise to explore remote learning arrangements in more detail during the term.

They found that schools were using remote learning to reach those who had to stay at home. Some leaders in the schools talked about implementing a recovery curriculum, and in some cases, this involved more emphasis on personal, social and health education and wellbeing.

A few schools reported safeguarding concerns about the use of online learning and about learners having access to devices and the internet.

Leaders in the schools visited recognised the difficulties with communicating with parents during periods of remote learning and the difficulties that learners had in completing work at home.

Evidence was found that while learners were away from school, their communication skills had regressed, that they were finding it more difficult to concentrate and some were showing less resilience.

Several leaders in the schools visited said that learners were more subdued than normal.

It was noticed that some learners’ physical health had deteriorated while they had not been in school and a minority had been very anxious about returning to school.

There were examples of schools providing additional support for individual learners such as counselling and a phased return to school.

It was reported that in some schools there had been an increase of safeguarding concerns, linked to domestic abuse during the lockdown and some schools had provided food parcels because some families needed additional support to get the food they needed.

The report highlights the importance for pastoral leaders and staff to consider carefully how to meet the different needs of young people, in an unpredictable and quickly changing situation.

Schools will need to consider how to use available pastoral resources to support learners. Young people need to be able to make sense of their learning experience, their daily lives, and the world around them.

Tutoring provides a planned strategy for supporting young people in school. This is more important in the 21st century, than ever before when young people have access to information on the internet that can influence their thinking and actions. This information can be misleading and, in some cases, factually wrong.

If schools do not have an effective structured approach to tutoring, then young people will find other ways to get the guidance and information they need, from the internet and from their peers, to be able to make sense of their experiences and to have a purpose, to their daily lives.

The information provided by their peers comes with risks, because it is likely that the source was the internet, or they are giving the information they think their peer wants to hear.

Family life in the 21st century means that, in many cases, both parents are working and because of the pressures of full time jobs, they do not have the time to always explore the feelings and concerns of their children when it is most needed.

The family is less likely than in the past to have a regular routine of sitting down to dinner or sharing leisure time together and this means there are fewer opportunities to share and to discuss issues that are important to young people.

A purpose of tutoring is to help young people to make sense of events that are happening, that are having an impact on their daily lives or causing concern. A tutor period is a safe place for worries and feelings to be explored and discussed.

This is a time for issues in school, the local community and in the world, such as a global pandemic, to be discussed with the support of a tutor the young people know and have a trusting relationship with.

A tutor period provides a structured approach to exploring feelings and ideas. An effective tutor group with routines, established expectations and positive relationships can be a safe place where young people can test their ideas and challenge boundaries.

This, of course, does not just happen and there needs to be a planned approach to the pastoral care of young people in the school and the role of the tutor needs to be valued and supported.

It is part of growing up to question the status quo and to use their youthful energy to challenge custom and practice.

I remember being in a school where top buttons on shirts had to be done up and how brave we felt walking down the corridor, with them undone to rebel against the rules.

In one of my first teaching appointments the school had two buildings, separated by a field. At every change of lesson, the Headteacher could be found on the path, supervising to make sure there were no opportunities, for rebellious learners to take a short cut across the field.

I still had my bravery from my school days and one day, I asked him why he allocated so much time to supervising the path.

His answer was that he would rather young people challenge authority on something that does not really matter than on something more serious.

It is not unusual for young people to challenge authority, especially when they feel stressed or uncertain about a situation and this is when effective tutoring can provide young people with a safety net to catch concerns and negative feelings.

This is especially true during a time of crisis and uncertainty. A situation such as a global pandemic means that the need for pastoral support is going to be high, but it will be more challenging to deliver.

Young people need to be supported during changes to their normal experience, for example, during a period of remote learning.

Schools will need to be innovative, to find ways of providing effective support at the same time as having to deliver the academic curriculum. It will be challenging to maintain communication with learners and with parents.

Pastoral support will need to be planned to provide motivation and a sense of purpose for the learners.

Investing time in tutoring can be valuable during a crisis period, to keep young people engaged and feeling supported to make progress in their learning.

An established tutoring structure is an effective way of organising case work, especially when it increases at a time of crisis.

Tutors are in a good position, to know the young people from their regular contact with them and to be more aware of their family circumstances and backgrounds.

This knowledge and understanding informs decisions about appropriate interventions and support, to meet the individual needs of young people and build trust, to ensure that young people and their families are not dealing with issues in isolation.

Planning for remote learning needs to consider how pastoral support will be provided while it is needed and how pastoral resources will be allocated to support learners on their return to school.

Phil Jones
National Chair
The National Association for Pastoral Care in Education

GOOD PRACTICE: The First Article in a New Series Focusing on Success Stories in Pastoral Care from NAPCE Award Contestants

 

Welcome to the first in a series of “Good Practice” reports from finalists and winners of the NAPCE Awards 2020.

Every month we are going to share examples of some of the greatest work within pastoral care in the UK education sector, following the first NAPCE Awards.

In this opening episode, we are featuring Glenlola Collegiate School, a grammar school in Bangor, Northern Ireland.

Glenlola Collegiate School was a finalist in the Outstanding Contribution to Pastoral Care category and the Raising Awareness About Pastoral Care class at the NAPCE Awards 2020.

The following information was submitted to NAPCE by the school.

Glenlola Collegiate is a high achieving girls Grammar school in Bangor, Northern Ireland, and has a Pastoral Care team of four teachers and a pupil counsellor.

We endeavour to take a proactive approach to Pastoral Care and opened the Cygnet Wellness Centre in August 2019 with funding from our PTA.

This is open to all members of staff and pupils.
The Centre comprises a Wellness room, counselling office and a relaxation room and we are presently extending this to include a Wellness Garden.

The Wellness Room is supervised by the Pastoral Care Team and Peer Listeners.

For many years, we have had a team of Peer Supporters – these are sixth form students who apply for the post and have been trained in pastoral care and safeguarding issues using Childline Resources.

Last year, we formed a Pupil Wellness Team comprising Peer Supporters, Peer Listeners and a Pastoral Care Prefect.  The Peer Supporters are attached to Junior School Form classes and the Peer Listeners assist with the running of the Wellness Centre.

Our Pastoral Teachers also received training from AWARE NI and are certified Mental Health First aiders.

Our Counsellor is trained in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and she takes small group sessions in the Wellness room as well as being available at other times for counselling.

The relaxation room is used for Pilates and mindfulness sessions for staff and pupils and we are presently developing this to include a sensory area, the idea for which came from an Erasmus trip to Helsinki in November 2019.

Work for our Wellness garden is well under way and we hope to open this in August.  Many staff members have assisted with the recent development of the Wellness Garden and we found this to help with our own health and wellbeing as well as providing a space for pupils and staff to relax in.

The work completed thus far has been a whole school effort and we have also found this to be extremely positive in strengthening staff relationships and morale, particularly recently during the very strange and uncertain times we now find ourselves in.

The following photograph is of members of the Pastoral Care Department (From left to right:Brian Montgomery, Vice Principal for Pastoral Care, Ana Savage, Pastoral Care Prefect Heather Law, Head of Pastoral Care, Joanne Wilson, Deputy Head of Pastoral Care, Lorna Monroe, Pastoral Care Assistant. Eric Thompson, Principal, Cheryl Brown, Student Counsellor).

The following two photographs are of our Wellness Room.

The following photographs show members of staff recently working on the Wellness Garden – still a work in progress but we hope to have it ready by the end of August.

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