Pastoral care

Pastoral care

As a deliberately small school, Cothill is an extended family. Most pupils and staff know everyone’s name. Friendships transcend all ages and our pupils become lifelong friends. 

Our teaching and support staff work in tandem to care for and support every boy. They provide that home-from-home feel that allows our pupils to feel safe, protected and able to give their best shot every day. We support them when they feel down and cheer them on when things go well.

We talk - a lot! - and it is by talking that we can identify when a child needs support and what that support would best look like. 

We also set high moral expectations that mean they know right from wrong while understanding what we hope they will develop into. They are learning how to navigate this world, and it is our job to guide them, applying not only our Cothill values but also their own and those of their families. 

Cothill pupils are encouraged to be self-aware, confident and inquisitive, to listen and consider the views of others, and to make informed decisions. When things don't go according to plan, they know there is a safety net, someone who will listen and a shoulder to cry on if the need arises.

They also know that we will build them up again and again, helping them to get on in life, confident that they have reflected and learnt from their experience.

We believe that a happy, secure and confident boy will make excellent progress in all aspects of school life. Our system of pastoral care allows us to help each boy lay the best possible foundations on which they can learn, grow and develop as young people ready for the next stage in their life.

The Form Teacher & House Parents

Boarding, flexi and day pupils are looked after by their Form Teacher, whom they see at the start of each day.  The Form Teacher encourages and assists them in all aspects of school life, from achieving their academic and sporting goals to offering support and advice on relationships, current affairs and life skills.

In the boarding houses, House Parents create a warm, homely community. Together with duty staff, they hear about the child’s days, oversee their daily routine and arrange fun and inspirational activities to keep them busy and happy. 

Our Wellbeing & Happiness Programme

The Wellbeing & Happiness Programme aims to teach our pupils to look after their own mental health and wellbeing as well as those of children around them The programme includes:

  • a PSHE curriculum with a strong focus on mental health
  • Mindfulness and Wellbeing classes
  • Access to our in-house counsellor
  • Daily exercise
  • Nutritious food
  • Our Pastoral Mentor Scheme

Many of the staff have also received specialist mental health training, so they can support our pupils' mental and physical wellbeing.

Physical, emotional and family support

A dedicated surgery in Main House is staffed by a team of nurses. Matrons also live in each boarding house and are always at the ready for our pupils, be it to find lost teddies and repair escaping fluff, or just to offer reassurance and give a hug when it is needed. A First Aider is always present during school matches. 

We strongly encourage parents to become an active part of our school community. From the time that your child joins Cothill, their parents are invited to special lunches and family days when they can get to know the school better. All parents are welcomed to matches on Wednesdays and Saturdays, whether their child is playing or not.  Most of our parents attend our regular concerts, plays and recitals as well as occasional sports fixtures.

Birthdays are important to all children, and they are celebrated with gusto at Cothill! Each pupil is given a present from the Head and can share their birthday cake with their friends. Parents are welcome to come and celebrate too. 

I am very proud of our happy Cothill community. I love seeing the older boys reading the younger boys stories or showing them how to do something new.

Adam Pearson, Deputy Head (Pastoral)