Here at The Priory School we are keen to cultivate the emotional, physical and cognitive development of our students. This work pervades all areas of the community from the delivery of the curriculum to the support the year teams provide.
Each year group has a team consisting of form tutors and year head. This team moves with the student from Y7 to Y11 allowing time for the building of relationships and trust. In addition, there are non-teaching pastoral staff: Julie Laycock (wellbeing), Sam Brazier (attendance & behaviour) (KS4) and Sharon Brown (KS5). The team tracks the academic progress of each student and liases with the Head of Pastoral (Lawrence Foster) and Head of Student Wellbeing (Katie Southall) as well as the Heads of Department, in order to ensure that appropriate interventions are in place to support our students.
The team closely monitors and supports the emotional wellbeing of the students in their year group.
Emotional and Physical Wellbeing Surveys
All Y7 and Y10 students currently complete an annual Wellbeing Survey. The survey is composed of questions which have been discussed, modified and agreed at our Student Leadership Committee. Results of these surveys are closely analysed in order to ensure that students are receiving the support that they need as well as whole school issues are being addressed.
Support and Information
In order to complement the work of our pastoral teams, 2 counsellors attend school each week and are on hand to confidentially discuss issues that are concerning students. This has been invaluable and has enabled students to worry less and so engage with their learning. In the pastoral; base there is a student leaflet section for students to collect useful literature relating to wellbeing and mental health. In addition to this, there are notice boards in both boys and girls toilets listing web-sites and telephone numbers of services which offer advice and support.
Our mentoring programme also enhances our support for the young people in our care. We utilize services such as Phase, Step 2 and Tilehouse Counselling to name a few.
Students also receive assemblies and form time sessions around wellbeing and mental health. For the second year running, we have a cohort of students training to become qualified “Youth Health Champions”. Annually, we run a wellbeing conference for our main feeder primary schools and we have events such as wellbeing week, feeling good week and a mental health awareness fair.
Staff also receive training in LGBT+ support and self-harm awareness. This year, 15 members of our pastoral staff will complete Mental Health First Aid training.
For more information and support, please see the full list of websites and material detailed below.
Our mentoring programme also enhances our support for the young people in our care.
Citizenship (delivered during form time) incorporates PSHE into its programme. (See curriculum page). Y9 also have a sex education day.
If you would like more information on our SPD programme please contact Faye Nearney at school.
Hitchin Connecions Centre
Bancroft Centre for Young People
Hitchin SG5 1JW
Thursdays 1.30pm – 4.15pm
A-DASH (Adolescent Drug Service in Hertfordshire)
A free and confidential service aimed at young people up to the age of 18 years. If you need to talk, phone 01923 427288 (office number) or send a text message to 07770 537227.
For information on alcohol and to find local support services in your area, visit
Call DinkLine on 0800 917 8282
Drugs information and advice www.talktofrank.com or 0800 776 600 www.talktofrank.com
Hundreds of volunteer oportunities for 16-25 year olds. Make friends, do stuff that you like, build on your skills and get recognition for the time you give. MV is great for your CV! www.mvherts.org.uk or 01992 623990.
www.anti-bullyingalliance.org.uk or 020 7843 1901
www.kidscape.org.uk or 08451 205 204
(Free 24 Hour)
Confidential advice and support on any problems.
www.childline.org.uk or 0800 1111 Confidential. If you are deaf, text phone Childline 0800 400 222.
NHS Hertfordshire Stop Smoking Service
0800 389 3998
Support and advice to people who want to give up smoking.
NHS Pregnancy No Smoking Helpline
0800 169 9 169
Hours: 12.00 noon – 9.00pm 7 days a week
Support and advice to pregnant women who want to give up smoking.
A charity offering information and support on a wide range of topics for anyone parenting a child. Services include a telephone helpline, internet advice pages, email help sevices, locaql courses and free leaflets.
www.parentlineplus.com or 0800 800 2222
24 hour advice line 0845 4647
HYHG North Project
25 Sun Street, Hitchin
Provides information, advice and support to young homeless people in Hertfordshire. Services provided include: support for you in your home to help you stay there, finding appropriate acomodation, resettlement, mediation and substance misuse support.
Brook Advisory Service
Confidential Helpline: 0800 0185 023 Mon – Fri, 9.00am – 5.00pm
Text BROOK INFO to 81222
Offers free confidential advice, information and counselling on pregnancy and contraception to young people under 25. Some other services are free but check on the website or helpline.
If you are aged between 10 and 25 and registered with a Hertfordshire GP surgery, you can sign up, choose an avatar (an online character) to represent you anonymously and have an online chat with a counsellor or therapist.
Your counsellor or therapist can help with lots of different problems, including family problems, eating disorders, loneliness, bullying, anxiety and depression.
Kooth’s counsellors and therapists are available until 10pm, 365 days a year. Users can talk to other young people anonymously on the forums whenever they like, and keep an online journal.
Tools for Schools
Tools for supporting children and young people’s mental health.
www.likeitis.org.uk (Sexual Health)
www.fpa.org.uk (Sexual Health)
www.thesite.org (General Info)