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Pastoral Care

A caring and child-centred Pastoral Care provision lies at the heart of Down High School’s ethos and good practice. It is our priority that the pupils attending the school are safe and their welfare paramount. For this reason, a strong pastoral team has been assembled with the aim of supporting a child’s academic, behavioural and emotional development.

The school has developed a series of policies in relation to Pastoral Care. These include: Child Protection, Positive Behaviour, Anti- Bullying, Drugs Education, RSE and Special Educational Needs.  School Policies are available on request from the school office.

Each form class is under the supervision of a Form Teacher who looks after the welfare and progress of the pupils. It is usual for the Form Teacher to teach the class in his/her individual subject in order to get to know each pupil well. Effective co-operation between parents and the school pre-empts most serious situations and provides the best possible support for young people in their formative school years. Queries concerning a pupil’s welfare should be addressed to the Form Teacher, Head of Year, Head of School or Mr McKillen, the Vice-Principal in charge of Pastoral Care.

Throughout the school year, consultation afternoons are arranged to allow parents to discuss their child’s progress with subject teachers.

Parents may contact the school to discuss a pastoral or academic issue at any time and interviews with the Principal can be scheduled through her Personal Assistant.

Special Educational Needs

Down High School has assigned two teachers to direct the Special Needs programme.  Most classrooms within the school can be entered via ramps and there is a lift in the main building which gives access to the first floor. Specialist rooms such as Technology and Home Economics have been adapted to give all students access to every aspect of the curriculum.

A number of classroom assistants support children on the Special Educational Needs Register and Individual Education Plans are used to establish targets for pupils in every subject. In Down High School we value the partnership formed with parents and as a consequence ensure parents are kept fully informed, and involved in their children’s education.