students sat on the grass

Wellbeing at The Beacon

21 February 2024

2 students laughing

At The Beacon, the welfare and wellbeing of our Beacon boys is a primary focus. We implement a strong pastoral system involving a multi-disciplinary team who meet on a regular basis to discuss and address whole-school issues.

Our dedicated staff, from class teachers to pastoral tutors, serve as the first point of contact for all our boys and parents, guiding them through their time at the school. Safeguarding is of utmost importance, reflected in weekly meetings and constant vigilance from our Safeguarding Team and Senior Management. Our Pastoral Care Team strives to ensure that no child slips through the cracks, with individualised confidential support and interventions coordinated by Heads of Section, medical professionals, and a fully qualified Learning Support Team among other stakeholders.

With a full-time Wellbeing Coach and Counsellor, two Mental Health First Aiders and a team of 16 trained Mental Health Champions across the school, we provide comprehensive support for our Beacon Community. Drop-in sessions led by our Mental Health Champions offer a safe space for boys to express themselves, complemented by Mental Health First Aid kits around the school and regular visits from a gentle and comforting therapy dog; Willow.

The Beacon embraces themed weeks and intervention clubs, developing mindfulness, regulation, and social skills. We run a Mindfulness After-School Club for Pre-Prep boys which focusses on which focusses on self-regulation, keeping calm, and paying attention to the present moment.

We run a Mindfulness After-School Club for Pre-Prep boys which focusses on paying attention to the present moment. This allows boys to experience and connect with how they feel, allowing them to slow down and self-regulate their emotions. Learning this invaluable life skill from a young age helps them manage the ever-increasing pace of life as they grow and develop. The Pre-Prep boys also enjoy ‘Circle Time’ as part of their school programme teaching them to build a sense of self-awareness, encouraging them to understand and communicate their feelings.

Our Upper School boys embark on a mentoring system, giving them the opportunity to develop their leadership skills by taking on the role of a Peer Mentor to boys in Lower School. The mentors organise games and discussions, offering one-to-one guidance and advice to boys in Years 3 and 4, including academics, social life and wellbeing. Peer mentoring has been shown to be an effective intervention for mental health support in schools, and this system has been extremely well received by The Beacon boys.

The Beacon appoints a School Council (as nominated and elected by the boys) comprising of representatives from each class across the school, who are chosen to represent the views of the boys. The School Council enables boys to raise issues and concerns and to suggest ideas for making improvements to the school, environment and local community. The boys take part in half-termly meetings, where they hold discussions and bring along their forms’ suggestion boxes.

The importance of staff wellbeing is also recognised. A host of social events are available to attend and moments for relaxation provided. Healthy staff contributes to a healthy school. Our commitment to wellbeing extends across all levels, ensuring every member of our community feels supported and valued.

Read the news story all about Children’s Mental Health Week at The Beacon – click here.

To hear from our Wellbeing Coach and Counsellor; Sandy Drury, listen to Episode 17 of Beaconverse – click here.