WHAT HAPPENS IN PASTORAL CARE
The Pastoral Care (PC) teacher is a facilitator, a leader, a coach! The teachers are the first point of contact for discipline and the pastoral needs of the students in PC. The teacher needs to provide a structure for the activities in the room and to guide the development of the group. PC is an everyday activity – the day begins in PC and so it is an integral part of our holistic program. PC is a time for prayer, reflection, and growth as an individual and as a group of people who share their journey in secondary education. Pastoral Care teachers play a vital role in the life of the College, both pastorally and administratively. They are generally the first point of contact for students in their PC groups and their parents.
As part of the ongoing Pastoral Care at St Joseph’s Regional College each year our Year 10 students deliver a Peer Support program to younger peers. The vertical Pastoral Care (PC) structure of the College means that our Year 10 students act as leaders throughout the year, they are a valuable asset to their Pastoral Care teachers and are exposed to valuable leadership opportunities.
Peer Support has evolved over the last few years and is moving toward a program that is written and developed by students who then deliver the lessons. They are trained as a year group at the end of Year 9 and then invited to work in smaller groups to evaluate and develop the content throughout Year 10. The program hopes to establish and strengthen positive relationships in PC groups. It also aims to build empathy and develop communication skills as students are encouraged to express themselves to other members of their PC family. This connectedness and community building, as well as personal skills, are valuable tools to reduce bullying and promote positive mental health outcomes for students.