At Portchester Community School, we want every student to feel safe and secure; for them to become successful learners, confident individuals and responsible citizens.
The school recognises that some young people will experience times in their life when things are not going well. This could be for a range of reasons with different needs require specific support.
The information on this page will give you an overview of the student support which is available at Portchester Community School, as well as a clear picture of the range of people, resources and experience on hand to support our young people.
1-to-1 Pastoral Support
Each year group have their own Pastoral Team, consisting of a Year Leader and Pastoral Assistant. They work together as a team to support the students in their year group.
The year group teams for 2021-2022 are:
Every student has daily access to their Pastoral Team. They can request the opportunity to speak with them on a one-to-one basis about any aspect of school life which is causing them concern. This includes if they wish to speak about their wellbeing and emotional health. Parents, carers and other members of staff can also contact the team if they have a concern.
During this discussion, other means of support may be suggested which will help them to work together with the student to meet a student’s emotional needs. These include:
Close liaison with the parents and carers is crucial to provide effective support for our young people and the pastoral teams endeavour to ensure that they are kept fully informed and are aware of the outcomes of the meetings. Please contact your child’s Year Team, if you feel they would benefit from a specific one to one meeting.
This year we are running a mentoring service for our Year 11 students. However, we recognise that at times, students in other year groups would benefit from being mentored by a member of the school staff. This would involve the student meeting weekly with a member of staff which they have identified at a mutually agreed appropriate day and time. They would speak about how their week is going, their concerns and together they would speak through suitable next steps. This may in some cases require seeking support from other professionals. The outcomes of these meetings would be tracked via our in school SIMS system.
Within the SEN department, Social Emotional and Mental Health support is available. Referrals to this part of their team will usually come via the Pastoral teams in conjunction with parents and carers. Specific members of the department are trained in supporting in these specific areas and will work with the students on a specific weekly basis for a period of time to help them develop strategies to help them self-manage their emotions including developing an awareness of when they need to seek help. This is in addition to brief daily check ins where appropriate. The support may be done on a one to one basis or in small groups.
They will cover areas such as:
· Anger management
· Anxiety and stress
· Self-esteem and confidence
· Social communication
· Emotional regulation
· Life skills
School Nursing team Support
Our attached school nurse is Sara Chard Tuckey. The Pastoral Teams liaise with her to discuss our students’ medical issues and support. Sara is able to meet with parents and students to advise and support on a range of health and medical needs, including diagnosed medical conditions, healthy lifestyle, eating disorders and sleep. She can access a student’s medical records with parental permission to discuss queries or concerns a parent may have about their child’s care or medication. Sara works with us to ensure that we are delivering the best possible service to our students and parents.
Students with long-term medical conditions will have a care plan written which is shared with staff in order to ensure that their medical needs are fully supported in school. These can be written by the school in liaison with parents or with specialist medical support, for example the specialist advisory service for conditions such as Diabetes or epilepsy. These are reviewed each year for transition or, in the case of a change to the care package or medication, these plans may be reviewed earlier. All students with a care plan hold a medical card to access our medical team unchallenged if needed.
Our Medical Team
Within Portchester Community School, we have a medical room open during school hours. It is manned by appropriately first aid qualified members of staff who see students that are unwell, assess them and then offer appropriate support. This often involves the staff working in conjunction with members of the year group pastoral teams. All medical issues are tracked and recorded with medication being held in a locked facility, along with parental permission to administer the medicines.
Students that may be referred out of practical lessons due to short or long term medical conditions are timetabled to work in Learning support and are able to complete set work within the room.
Homework Club runs daily in the LRC from 3.15 pm–4.30 pm. It is staffed by support staff and students sign in each day so that parents are able to track their child’s attendance. Students have access to computers and are able to print out work if they need. Support staff are there to help them. Some students need help with organising their homework and the staff on duty will be more than happy to help them create a homework plan to track what they have completed and handed in.
If you have any questions regarding Homework Club or your child’s attendance, please speak to your child’s year group pastoral team in the first instance.
Portchester Community School run a Breakfast Club which is open daily from 7.30 am to 8.20 am. It is run by Mr Thompson. During Breakfast Club, students have the opportunity to have some food and a drink for free in somewhere which is warm and safe. They can play games, socialise with their peers, sit quietly or talk with members of staff about their day. Some students use this time to have a one to one check in with a specific member of staff.
Year Group Pastoral Teams
In addition to providing one to one support for students in their year group, members of the Pastoral Teams regularly communicate with parents, carers and representatives from other professional organisations via phones, email and in person at meetings. These organisations include:
· Our local police team
· Children’s Services - e.g. Family Support Workers, Social Workers
· Health professionals
· Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMHS)
· Moving on project
Our Educational Psychologist
Portchester School has a service level agreement with Kerry Jackson EP Ltd. Kerry Jackson provides five days of educational psychology service per year to the school.
Kerry works with students, families and school staff to find out about a student’s strengths and additional needs and this enables support strategies to be identified. She does this by talking with school staff and parents, observing students in lessons and working with students individually. Information is gathered about the student’s history, their current situation, their relationships and their learning abilities. Kerry writes a report after her involvement and this summarises the views of everyone involved and provides suggestions for support strategies to help the student to make progress.
Students are referred to Kerry when school staff have concerns that he or she is struggling to access learning and is not making the progress that would be expected, or is finding it very difficult to manage his or her emotions and relationships. School staff always discuss the possibility of a referral to Kerry with parents and she is only able to get involved when parents have given their written consent.
Within school there are skilled staff who are experienced in identifying and supporting children with additional needs and so the school always provides help to students within school before a decision is made to refer to Kerry. She only gets involved when lots of support has already been provided within school.
CAMHS is used as a term for all services that work with children and young people who have difficulties with their emotional or behavioural wellbeing. Specialist CAMHs are NHS Mental Health Services that focus on the needs of children and young people.
They are multidisciplinary teams that often consist of:
If you would like more information about the service and what they can offer your child, please visit https://youngminds.org.uk is a great website that offers a beginner's guide to CAMHs for young people and parents.
Referring to CAMHs
This can be done either through your GP or through the school. Please contact your child’s year group pastoral team in the first instance.
Representatives from Portchetser Community School attend the Fareham and Gosport Safeguarding and Mental Health Forum which meet half-termly – this is an opportunity to discuss growing trends linked to mental health and wellbeing, the most up-to-date services and resources available to support young people and to share and gather information with professionals.
Portchester Community School recognises that some students may be young carers outside of school which requires them to juggle other responsibilities alongside their school life. These students can access support via their year group’s pastoral team. This support may involve helping manage their time on a day to day basis, talking through their concerns or wanting to meet with other young people in similar situations. Staff will liaise with the local young carers group for advice.
For more information and support about being a young carer, please visit:
Simon Says provides child bereavement support to children, parents, teachers and carers throughout Hampshire.
Child Bereavement UK supports families and educates professionals when a baby or child of any age dies
or is dying, or when a child is facing bereavement.
Grief Encounter is a Child Bereavement Charity.
Hope Again - Young people coping with bereavement and living after loss.
Help In Bereavement offer support in the Portsmouth, Gosport, Fareham, Havant, Emsworth, Waterlooville and surrounding areas of.
Winstons Wish support children and their families after the death of a parent or sibling.