Pre-Prep Pastoral Care

We believe that happy minds are essential for children to thrive. Exceptional pastoral care ensures that the years spent at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep and Prep are inspiring, enabling every boy to fulfil his full potential.

It’s the form teacher who has daily contact with the boys in his class and is at the forefront of pastoral care. He is responsible for each pupil’s well-being and will be responsive to both the boys and their parents.

The house system and the buddy system, whereby every Kindergarten boy is allocated an older boy to act as his mentor, provides another layer of pastoral support. This is because every boy feels championed and cheered on by his house and his buddy and there is a huge sense of pride in belonging to a house.

The form teacher will get to know each boy and will introduce him to his classmates, although many of the boys will have met during a ‘getting to know you’ event earlier in the summer. Form teachers will be acutely aware of the boys’ happiness and progress at all times, especially in the early weeks.

It really matters for the youngest boys that parents or carers are allowed into the school to chat informally with form teachers each day. This is a special time when a boy’s early triumphs and small challenges can be shared. In addition, the weekly newsletter and regular email communication allow parents to feel that they are fully involved in school life from the first week. Help and encouragement will always be offered if any educational issues are raised.

The golden rules

The golden rules – our school rules that set the general standard of behaviour – ensure that the boys behave well. As a result, our boys tend to be full of life, sociable, friendly, kind to each other and mannerly. The rules are:

  • Do be gentle.
  • Do be kind and helpful.
  • Do work hard.
  • Do look after property.
  • Do listen to people.
  • Do be honest.

Personalised plan

Once the boys have settled in, building confidence and self-belief in a managed and careful way with an emphasis on positive feedback and rewards is intrinsic in all we do at Eaton House Belgravia. The form teachers look at each pupil’s developmental progress weekly and feed back to the headmaster, Mr Huw May. Together, they devise a detailed personalised plan for each pupil, which covers both academic and non-academic issues for that period.

In the run-up to exams, parents receive a written feedback report every two weeks which gives them confidence that their son is on track and making good progress. Our open-door policy ensures that any matters arising from these reports can be dealt with quickly and efficiently, in a genuinely positive dialogue between the school and parents.

Form Teacher

Form teachers are the first point of contact for both pupil and parent and they are there for the boys in every way.

They take the time to get to know each and every boy from the week that he joins and ensure that he is happy, productive and fully integrated into the life of our busy school. This means that they encourage success, suggest extra work where it is needed, and help with the personal and social development of every boy in the course of the first year and beyond.

They are attentive to parent and pupil queries at all times, but especially at the start of Kindergarten year (reception) when everything is new and extra reassurance and help may be needed to cope with the demands of a busy timetable.

Pre-Prep and KG

On entry to the Pre-Prep, boys are allocated to classes by age. They attend school full-time in Kindergarten, unless they are in LKG (Lower Kindergarten) where, during the first autumn term, parents have the option of taking the boys home on Wednesday and Friday afternoons at 12:10pm if they wish. This is to stop the youngest boys becoming overtired in the first few weeks.

Form teachers also guide the KG boys in their homework and ensure that it is collected the following day. They will look at any parents’ notes in the homework book and use them to plan future progress, which may include one-to-one coaching sessions to support a boy’s learning and development.

At the Pre-Prep, form teachers are usually available to have a nice moment with parents and carers at the end of the day when they can talk about how the day has gone, make any suggestions that may help in the week ahead and advise on any small matters that may arise. They have a very personal relationship with parents and, unlike other schools that may have ‘collect at the gate’ policies, they see them every day. This is a huge benefit to families, because any concerns are caught early and the appropriate action can be taken. When a boy has had a special triumph or earned a house point or merit, the form teacher will be there to discuss it with the parent, though it is worth noting that all these rewards are known to the whole school because they are displayed on an electronic noticeboard in the hallway!

Individual treatment

Form teachers at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep treat each child, and each family, with respect and as individuals. They try to create a warm, nurturing and open environment, so that parents feel comfortable and fully included in their son’s learning journey.

Form teachers also guide the boys in their homework and ensure that it is collected the following day. They will look at any notes from parents in the homework book and use them to plan future progress, which may include one-to-one coaching sessions to support boys’ learning and development.

The form teacher will also be aware of whether a child has any medical issues or allergies or has to take medicine at school and will be responsible for safeguarding him in this respect, using the guidance of a signed parental consent form. He or she will ensure that the catering staff are fully aware of each child’s needs and will strictly monitor special eating needs at lunchtime.

Attention to detail

Above all, the form teachers have to ensure that the boys in their care are happy, both academically and socially, and performing well along the lines of their personal development plan. In the run-up to examinations, they report every week to the headmaster on a child-by-child and subject-by-subject basis, with reports home every week.

This attention to detail is what makes the Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep form teachers so exceptional.  They are determined that every boy should feel noticed and supported and his talents be maximised while he is at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep.

As our former head boy commented in the Eaton House Schools’ The Column magazine, “Eaton House Belgravia has the best teachers.”

House System

Beyond the form teacher, a well-established house system provides the overarching structure for effective and consistent pastoral care within the school.

The head of house is an important figure in a boy’s life and someone he can always turn to for advice and support. The house master or mistress is a boy’s cheerleader, noticing all the positive impacts that he is having as part of his house team and rewarding him accordingly.

On entry to the school boys join one of four houses (Red, Green, Yellow or Blue). Siblings are automatically placed in the same house, allowing whole families to support individual houses at school events. Housemistresses and housemasters hold regular house meetings and there are various special house events throughout the year, which include lots of competitions and challenges in music, sport and other subjects.

House points and commendations

Stars and house points are awarded for good work and behaviour and sometimes a boy will be called to his house master or mistress for a special commendation. House points are totalled each week and displayed on the plasma screen in the entrance hall. Cups are awarded at the end of every term for individual, termly and yearly totals.

Boys love winning house merits for their team. Friday morning assembly, when merits are given out, is always an exciting time. As a balance, boys may occasionally be sent to their house mistress or master for poor behaviour or work but this is an unusual occurrence in what is an enthusiastic and hard-working school.

The boys become very attached to their individual houses and are all naturally convinced that their houses are the best!

Well-Being

This is a school where well-being matters, where every child is noticed and valued, and where the development of the whole child and his happiness at school is at the centre and front of our thinking.

We aim to get to know every boy as an individual from the first day, supporting him, championing him and building up his self-belief until he understands that he can achieve (and, in fact, does achieve) incredible things!

Knowing the boys, sharing their highs and lows, being there for them in every way, is of prime importance to us. Pastoral care is intrinsic in all we do, the fundamental cornerstone of Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep. It is integrated through the teaching, learning and structural organisation of the school, effectively meeting the needs of all the boys.

Quality pastoral care focuses on the whole boy and his personal, social, and academic development. Pastoral care assists boys in developing positive self-esteem, healthy risk taking, goal setting and negotiation. This enhances the boys’ resilience and develops a sense of social cohesion and belonging.

What we expect of the boys

We expect the boys to be mindful, to care for others, to be mannerly and to behave like young gentlemen. Boys are taught to work in groups and to express opinions in a manner that encourages respect. These are the values that we try to instil in our boys, leading by example. Teachers constantly emphasise that the boys should be kind and considerate towards others and this enhances the well-being of the whole school.

Our boys are positive, upbeat and ambitious, for themselves and for their fellow team members and housemates. They work well in houses, and with each other, and they contribute mindfully, trying to let everyone have his say.

They are bright, thoughtful, kind and willing boys and we miss them all when they move on.

It follows from the kind of boys that we produce that there is a culture of kindness in the school which we actively foster. This makes Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep a fantastic place in which to go to school.

All our staff are highly responsive to any child or parent who raises an issue where a child feels uncomfortable or unhappy – but thankfully this is very rare. We have a zero-tolerance anti-bullying policy and a strict code of conduct which ensures that it is rarely needed.