We are committed to promoting the well-being of all students by supporting them to be physically and mentally healthy and able to cope with life’s challenges in a positive and constructive way. Crucial to this is the excellent pastoral care provided to day girls in both schools and boarders in the senior school and sixth-form.
We are delighted that we recently achieved the School Mental Health Award, delivered by the Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools. The school were awarded Gold standard, the highest level, for outstanding mental health and wellbeing provision.
Within the school, every girl belongs both to a house (day or boarding) and a form. She is in the joint care of her housemistress or housemaster and her form tutor, who are supported by heads of year. Generally, form tutors deal with problems of work and day-to-day routine and form time is dedicated to ensuring each student makes the most of her life at school, while the housemistress or housemaster has the pastoral care of a girl over several years. Both form and house staff communicate with each other and share information that directly affects a girl’s progress.
All boarding house staff live on site and ensure that full and weekly boarders enjoy a community life to the full, with the right balance of study, relaxation and challenge. Dedicated support is available to those girls for whom English is not their mother tongue. Day girls have their own school houses with dedicated staff and tutors to oversee the mix of school and home commitments.
We ensure that girls work together to forge supportive relationships with other girls of all ages throughout the school. Together, the whole school community provides a pastoral support framework which is finely attuned to the needs of both boarding and day pupils.
Girls at St Swithun’s live life to the full and need appetising, varied and well-balanced meals which our catering team is proud to provide. Girls and staff are regularly consulted about the menus which always include vegetarian meals, fresh fruit and salads as well as a choice of hot meals and desserts.
During term time, the Health Centre is staffed by nurses from 8am to 7pm Mondays to Fridays. House staff are trained in first aid and can access medical care for boarders out of hours if needed. Boarders are registered with the Friarsgate Practice in Winchester and the school doctor from this practice visits twice weekly and additionally when necessary.
We have a school counsellor (a clinical psychologist) on the staff who runs three drop-in sessions a week and is available for individual or group appointments. We also have an independent listener who girls can access through the school.
The school's chaplain lives on site and is available for all aspects of care and support for all girls irrespective of faith; girls are also encouraged to turn to any member of staff to whom they feel they can talk.