The happiness and well-being of all our pupils is extremely important to us and we have programmes in place to help pupils develop the tools to manage their own emotions and cultivate habits that will help them live a happy and fulfilling life. Throughout these programmes, pupils will work closely with form tutors, coaches and mentors both in small groups and one to one.
Student Well-being Ambassadors:
Our Year 8 pupils are trained at the beginning of each year as Well-being Ambassadors. They work in partnership with school staff to look after and promote the well-being of all pupils. Our Year 8 pupils are trained to know what to say and what to do when someone needs help.
Pupils in Years 5 to 8 have a tutorial at least once a term with a member of the team, where they will be given the opportunity to discuss how they are feeling on a confidential basis. Tutorial sessions are used to catch up on pupil’s welfare, how school life in both the core and non-academic subjects are progressing, and discuss other issues such as extra-curricular activities, future schools and scholarship preparations.
Every term we carry out a happiness survey with all pupils in the Prep School. We use the Children’s happiness scale which generates a happiness score. We then track this on our happiness tracker so that we can monitor a pupil’s happiness over an extended period of time. The analysis of the data allows us to identify any themes for a cohort or across the school, which we are then able to address. Individual pupils who have come out with a lower score will have a Tutorial so we can unpick areas causing them unhappiness or concern. We strongly believe that happiness and emotional well-being should be valued and monitored, just as closely as academic success, and we are committed in our desire to ensure that all of our pupils at Pennthorpe are happy, healthy and flourishing.
Respect for others is the underlying philosophy at Pennthorpe. Good behaviour and manners go hand in hand and form the basis of our code of discipline. We are proud of our traditional attitude to the basic courtesies such as holding doors open for others, saying ‘Good Morning/Afternoon’ and displaying good table manners.
Rewards and Sanctions:
There are many rewards to inspire and motivate children academically and as all-rounders. Effort is well rewarded and children are encouraged to focus on developing a strong work ethic as well as only being motivated by achievement.
Sanctions work within a hierarchical scale and are age appropriate.
Our leadership system across Year 7 and 8 is designed to offer all of our pupils greater opportunities to shine as leaders and to have their efforts recognised and rewarded. Pupils will be tracked half termly and a balanced assessment of the a set of indicators is used to inform decisions about Seniors and Prefects throughout the Senior Years. Each pupil receives a half termly tutorial regarding their progress towards these positions of responsibility, to support their on-going leadership development.
Once a pupil has reached Senior status they may choose to apply to become a Prefect. Pupils complete an application form answering the various questions to state their reasons for wanting to put themselves forward for this position of responsibility. They will then be invited to interview with the Headmistress and Head of Year 8. If they are successful at this interview they will be appointed and must continue to shine as leaders amongst our school community. If they are not successful first time round they will be given feedback and targets and may be asked back for interview later in the year.
Pupils are allocated to one of four Houses: Baynards, Gaskyns, Pallinghurst and Tismans. Siblings will always be in the same house. In addition to the weekly House Points competition, there are a range of other Inter-House sports, quizzes and music competitions that take place and there is a House Shield awarded each term to the house with the highest points score.
School and Eco Council:
Pennthorpe has a School Council and an Eco Council which are made up from specially elected children from Year 1 to Year 8. Both have a Charter that sets out the rules for our Pupil Councillors to take part in school decision-making. To enable them to be successful in this the school provides resources, training and support, and listens carefully to the council when it makes its proposals. The Eco Council has achieved its Silver Award and is now working towards the Gold Award.