As a college we recognise that growing up can sometimes be difficult. Sometimes despite the best efforts of the college or parents, there are students who fail to learn, who cannot find their place in their peer group, who dread coming to school or fail to fulfil their potential. In order to support our young people through difficult times, we have Student Support Services to which staff, students and parents can refer.
The aim of the Student Support Services is to provide high quality care, guidance & support for students so that they can grow into healthy, happy & hopeful young people with the capacity to learn, the ability to respect others and the creativity to make the most of the opportunities offered to them by Bacon’s.
The College has its own counselling service which comprises of 3 counsellors and 1 student art therapist. This service offers additional personal and confidential support to students who might benefit from the opportunity of working with a professional counsellor. Young people either refer themselves or are referred by staff or parents if they are struggling with a personal issue which is causing them anxiety and upset.
The college has a team of 2 mentors who work with students to overcome barriers to learning. Referrals are often for young people who are struggling with poor behaviour, who are very anxious about their work, who lack self confidence in their ability and who are generally disengaged with learning. Mentoring can have one of two focuses – academic mentoring or pastoral mentoring. One of the mentors is also has responsibility to link up with and support students who are currently out of college in alternative provision.
The College works closely with Southwark Mediation Service. This service has been running for 10 years and is firmly embedded in the ethos and culture of our College. The service is highly regarded and allows students a mechanism for resolving disputes, allowing them time and space to resolve their issues in a mature and respectful way.
Sixth form students are trained to mediate between students to support them in resolving their issues. Issues that are most commonly referred are: friendship issues, name calling, bullying, fights.
The monitoring of attendance falls under the remit of Students Support Services. The student welfare officer works with students who are:
The student welfare officer also works closely with all parents and is there to support them with personal issues which impact upon their child and his/her engagement with school and learning.
Support of parents is central to the work of the Student Support Services. These workshops have been running successfully for the last 10 years. This programme provides parents with insight into the social, emotional, psychological and intellectual development of their teenage child and supports them to negotiate these challenging years successfully. It also aims to help parents support their child's academic independent studies at home.
Ensuring that our students are safe and feel happy is central to our ethos as a college. We have clear protocols that are followed by staff to ensure that all concerns regarding safety are followed up. All concerns regarding student welfare and safety are followed up by the Safeguarding team within Student Support Services.
We have developed over the past years some strong links with outside agencies and have initiated several programmes to support students and families. Currently we are running two programmes ‘The Aiming High Programme’ which is supporting our Yr 7 students to make a successful transition from Yr 6 to Yr 7. We also have a ‘Sport & Thought’ Programme for some of our Yr 8 and 9 students who struggle to engage with learning.