The social and emotional wellbeing of our pupils has always been at the heart of everything we do here at Shebbear College and our supportive, secure and caring environment remains central to our community. Mrs Lovett is our Pastoral Lead and Miss Taylor is our Wellbeing Coordinator. Along with their team, they are always on hand to help with any issues or just to offer support where it is needed.
The Wellbeing Award for Schools
In June 2022 we achieved The Wellbeing Award for Schools. This award, run in partnership with the National Children’s Bureau, looks at the depth of mental health and wellbeing provision for both pupils and staff at the school. This accolade is testament to the outstanding wellbeing care provided by our amazing pastoral team, which we will continue to develop and improve going forward.
Health & Wellbeing Centre (HAWC)
As a small school, all of our teachers know all of our pupils, so if someone seems upset or not themselves, this will be picked up very quickly and a support system put in place. Our Health and Wellbeing Centre (HAWC) serves as a nurturing space for day and boarding pupils to go, either if they are feeling physically unwell or just need time to reflect.
As part of HAWC, we have a trained and experienced team including our Pastoral Lead/DSL, School Doctor, Chaplain, team of Matrons and Sex and Relationships Specialist. They are always on hand to listen and to talk things through whenever our pupils need support, with many being Mental Health First Aiders. Having Mental Health First Aid trained staff is pivotal for our staff's understanding of Mental Health and this course is completed by staff that have daily interactions with both day and boarding pupils.
We also hold regular sessions with our pupil groups:
The Mental Health Champions are a group of Sixth Formers that have had basic training to help identify any pupil in need or that may require support in school. They are also in support of the pastoral staff team to promote positive mental health and get involved with awareness raising events.
The Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Action Group is a team of pupils that highlight areas within the school community to make sure that the school is inclusive for all. Some successes of this group include identifying gender neutral changing facilities and toilets, and encouraging the introduction of all gender sports.
Our Allies Group is a group for students who are LGBTQIA+ or allies. The group meets once a week at lunchtime, and provides a safe space for students to discuss matters around identity, rights, equality and more, and a community for socialising.
All of our pupils from the Pre-Prep right up to Sixth Form take part in weekly PSHE lessons, covering topics such as emotional wellbeing, mental health, digital resilience (in the context of online pressures), exercise, healthy lifestyles and kindness. We also believe that getting outdoors as much as possible is a really important approach to a healthy body and mind and we try to take our learning outside where we can, appreciating nature and the world around us - we are lucky to have 85 acres of campus to enable us to deliver this!
What is unique about Shebbear, however, is that it is not just our teachers that have wellbeing at the forefront of their minds, but all of our pupils, who encourage and motivate each other, build each other up and help each other with problems. The words ‘Be Kind’ really are in evidence here and you can feel this as soon as you walk through the school gates and meet our pupils; our school values of compassion, courtesy, courage, creativity and confidence shine out in each and every one of them.
Both of my children are excelling themselves academically and I have to put this down to the quality of the teaching staff and the environment they live in. They are happy, cared for and have a fantastic group of friends around them.
- Shebbear Parent