In our friendly and warm community, each girl is known, valued and cared for as an individual. As a relatively small school, with a staff dedicated to meeting the needs of each and every student, we are able to focus on ensuring that girls at St Mary’s have a very happy school experience and leave us with the confidence and the skills to make the most of the life that lies ahead.
Our Personal Social Health and Economic Education programme continues throughout the school and aims to develop communication, social and life skills so that students leave St Mary’s as confident, articulate, mature young women, with high self-esteem. These qualities stand them in good stead throughout their lives and are valued by employers. Careers Advice is also given and there is preparation for further education, ensuring a smooth transfer to the sixth form of each student’s choice.
Girls joining St Mary’s have the support of a ‘Buddy’ – a student in the year above. The Buddies take their roles seriously and carry them out with pride. They lend a helping hand, or provide a friendly smile and generally help new students to settle in at school. Buddies host parties at Christmas and a Summer barbecue.
Girls in Years 10 and 11 act as peer counsellors – ‘Listeners’. They are elected and trained to support pastoral care at St Mary’s, volunteering during breaks and lunchtimes to support others in whatever way is required.
In addition to the school ‘Buddies’ and ‘Listeners’, there are many people to whom girls and their parents can turn for help if they have any questions or concerns. All staff at St Mary’s are dedicated to our students’ wellbeing and parents’ peace of mind. Please feel free to telephone the school to speak to a member of staff with whom you feel at ease or who you feel is most appropriate, given the nature of the issue. This could be the student’s Form Tutor, Head of Year, subject teacher (if a particular subject poses a problem), Director of Senior School Miss Jones, Principal Mrs Vipond, or any other member of staff. The Office staff will also be happy to help, or to steer you to the right person.
It does not matter if a problem seems a trivial one: please feel able to speak to any of us, to sort it out before it becomes a major worry. A further source of support may also be the website www.mydaughter.co.uk which aims to give advice on raising and educating girls.