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Pastoral Support

An Overview of our Pastoral Support Offer at

Tutshill C of E Primary School

There are many options for pastoral support on offer at Tutshill C of E Primary School.  Children that would benefit from support with any emotional, social or mental health needs they may have can be identified by staff within school and/or by their families at home.  Children may take part in a range of different interventions over their time at Tutshill School.  Discussions take place, between staff or between staff and families, to help decide the best provision for each individual child as needs arise or develop.

Class Based Support

Informal pastoral support takes place daily within classes.  Children are encouraged to talk to their class teachers and/or teaching assistants if there is something they would like to share or chat about.  Staff use an emotion coaching approach to help children work through any issues that may arise and to help children regulate their emotions.  Every class has a Regulation Station (an emotional regulation toolkit) to support children when they are managing big emotions.  Children are also encouraged to use a range of ‘tricks’ from our Trick Box resource to develop their emotional management and personal skills in four areas: calm, confidence, communication and creativity.  https://trickbox.co.uk/

1:1 and Small Group Pastoral Support

Children take part in 1:1 or small group sessions, led by an experienced Teaching Assistant, based on their social and emotional needs.  These sessions support children to develop in a range of areas, including social skills, following our golden rules and self-confidence, and usually last for around one half term.  Where appropriate, children are provided with longer-term 1:1 support, for example in the case of family illness or bereavement.

ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) Sessions

An ELSA is a specialist teaching assistant, trained and regularly supervised by an Educational Psychologist.  ELSA sessions can be 1:1 or in small groups and usually last 6-8 weeks.  Sessions support children’s emotional development and help them to cope with life’s challenges. Some of the areas that an ELSA can provide support for are: Emotional Literacy, Self-esteem, Social Skills, Friendship issues, Relationships, Managing strong feelings, Anxiety and worries, Emotional Regulation and Growth Mindset.



Drawing and Talking

Drawing and Talking is a child-centred 1:1 attachment-based therapeutic intervention, focused on supporting a child’s social and emotional wellbeing.  30-minute sessions take place once a week for 12 weeks with a trained practitioner.  The intervention-focused work helps build healthy attachments and is an effective way for children to process trauma or emotional pain they may be experiencing.  The technique is intended to allow a child to play, by drawing a picture, and process any emotions they are holding internally in a safe and non-confrontational way, working at their own pace.


TIME to Flourish

Time to Flourish is a bespoke initiative at Tutshill C of E Primary School, designed to support children with any social, emotional and mental health needs they may have.  Time to Flourish sessions take place once a week on Tuesday afternoons for around 12 weeks.  Children will attend in a small group of 12 children from across the school and sessions will be run by an ELSA-trained teacher and teaching assistant.  Sessions follow the same structure every week, based on the nurture approach to pastoral support.  Teaching and learning opportunities in Time to Flourish sessions are bespoke to the needs of the children, allowing them to develop the skills needed to flourish socially and emotionally.  Each child will be set a personal target, agreed with their class teacher, which they will work on during Time to Flourish sessions. 

Young Minds Matter (YMM)

Young Minds Matter (YMM) is a safe and confidential mental health support service developed for children and young people up to 18 years of age in schools across Gloucestershire.  From November 2023, we are now one of over 100 schools from Cheltenham, Gloucester and the Forest of Dean to work with the NHS in Gloucestershire to introduce Mental Health Support Teams into schools.  After a referral process involving parents/carers, these teams can provide valuable support to our pupils to help them with issues such as anxiety, friendship concerns, exam stress and challenging behaviour.

This may involve group work and/or individual, one-to-one support, either at school or elsewhere.  Where appropriate, the Mental Health Support Team also link up with the specialist mental health services in Gloucestershire.  They can also support parents and teachers to help children and young people who are experiencing difficulties.


LEARN to Flourish

Created by our Senior Leadership Team, Learn to Flourish is a pastoral AND academic initiative, designed to embody our Teaching & Learning approach at Tutshill C of E Primary School.  Learn to Flourish sessions aim to allow children to be the best learners they can be, through a focus on our school’s chosen learning behaviours (resilience, resourcefulness, reflection, evaluation, risk-taking, co-operation and creativity).

Children cover the same curriculum content as their peers in the classroom, but are taught by a qualified teacher in a small group of 12 children from their class over the duration of one half term (for three afternoons per week).  Children complete activities to help them better understand what the learning behaviours are as well as how to use them, before being supported to apply them in their schoolwork.