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The Pastoral Approach in our School

Introduction

Each member of St Joseph’s Mercy Navan has access to the relevant pastoral structures and procedures, through contact with the Principal, the Deputy Principals and the Year Heads. They can arrange an appointment with these individuals directly or through the school office. Each member is also invited to play their part in contributing to the pastoral ethos of this school community. St Joseph’s Mercy Navan seeks to nurture positive relationships as the core resource in developing a pastoral approach.

Pastoral Roles: Definitions and Responsibilities

The pastoral roles contribute to the pastoral nature of the school community. These are the Homeroom teachers, the Year Heads and the Guidance Counsellor. Other key roles in the school also carry significant pastoral dimensions and responsibilities.

Homeroom Teacher

The Homeroom Teacher’s classroom is the group of students for which they have responsibility. They have access to the relevant information on the students in their class. Homeroom Teachers meet as a group with their Year Head at the beginning of the school year. Members of the wider Pastoral Team will be invited to this meeting where possible. Homeroom teachers are given opportunities for professional development in their role annually if possible.

The Year Head

The Year Heads meet with their team of Homeroom Teachers at the beginning of the first term. The Year Heads are given opportunities for professional development. The Year Head reports to staff in relation to the year group and from time to time meets with the subject teachers and specific students when situations arise. The Year Head liaise with parents according to agreed procedures particular in respect of the annual parent-teacher meeting and individual conferences with parents. A clear role in the Code of Behaviour is designated – up to a recommendation for suspension. There is clear access to relevant information on the students in the year group. A regular meeting usually once a week occurs of the Year Head team with the Principal and Deputies with, when possible, members of the pastoral team.  The Year Heads have strategies to recognise and acknowledge excellence, effort and contributing to year spirit.

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