The Pastoral Care system in Omagh High School aims to provide a safe, caring and orderly atmosphere in which pupils can develop as individuals, and in which learning may take place effectively. The Pastoral Care in School is headed up by the Vice Principal, Mrs Quigley. A team of Pastoral leaders report directly to the Vice Principal with each pastoral leader having responsibility for one year group of pupils. The Pastoral leaders meet with the Vice Principal individually once per week, and meet together with the Vice Principal and Principal once per month as the Pastoral Committee. Each Pastoral leader is responsible for three House Teachers.
The House System
In Omagh High School we have a House system.
There are three houses in total, each with their own motto:
Auchinleck (red) “service with courage”
Crevenagh (green) “honest endeavour”
Strule (blue) “strength in unity”
The registration groups are based on the House System.
Everything we do in school is based around the House system.
Each pupil is allocated a House when they start school.
Each House is like a large family with the House as the common bond.
There are pupils of all ages in each House.
When a pupil achieves success in school they are rewarded with Achievement Points. These points are also awarded to their House. There are also Behavioural Points and they are deducted from the House total. Therefore successes will be shared with each House and also the disappointments.
As well as rewards for individual success there is also a House Cup.
There will be competitions throughout the year which everyone can take part in to try to win points for themselves and their House e.g. Inter House Sports Competitions, Drama etc. The House with the most points for the year (September to June) will win the House Cup and be rewarded with a Mystery Trip! The house teacher’s role is of paramount importance in a pupil’s school life.
The daily contact between the house groups and house teachers encourages the development of sound relationships between teacher and pupils. All the staff in school work closely together for the welfare of all the pupils; House Teachers, Pastoral Leaders, Vice Principal and Principal. This is a comprehensive and caring framework which helps us to get to know pupils, help them, direct them and care for them. Parents can be confident that our Pastoral care system is effective and your child will be cared for in Omagh High School.
Arrangements for children who become ill
A child who becomes ill is given permission by the class teacher to go to the School Welfare Person, Mrs Sandra Davis, based in the Post-16 Study Room, who will assess the pupil’s needs. Parents are contacted, if necessary, and arrangements are made for the pupil to be taken home. Any pupil that needs to go to casualty must be taken by a parent/guardian.
Any concerns about pupils which teachers become aware of will be referred to Mr Gaitatzis who is the designated teacher for Child Protection and Mrs Quigley who is the deputy designated teacher for Child Protection. In consultation with the Principal, she may refer the matter to Social Services. This duty of care and protection is a requirement of the Department of Education. Detailed Child Protection Guidelines are available on request. The Child Protection Policy is available on request and a summary of the policy is in the pupil’s homework diary.
There is a school counsellor available to all pupils. Referrals can be made via the house teacher, the pastoral leader or by the pupil. Further information, if required, can be obtained from the Vice Principal. The EWO also provides a support service. The school has in place a policy and procedures on the Use of Reasonable Force to Restrain or Control Students in line with Department of Education guidelines. A copy is available on request. Any complaints should be presented in the first instance, in writing to the Principal.
Multi-Agency Support Team (MAST)
As part of the Pastoral structure, a Multi-Agency Support Team (MAST) exists to provide a support service to the school in order that informed decisions can be reached regarding pastoral issues. As the title of the team implies, experts from a number of professional bodies meet to share information on how particular issues may be resolved for the benefit of pupils. This approach is particularly for the small number of pupils who are having difficulties in school and is an effective approach to resolving these difficulties.
Each year group is divided into a number of Houses each with a House Tutor. The year group is the responsibility of the Pastoral Leader. Pastoral Leaders are directed by the Vice-Principal responsible for pastoral care and with the exception of Year 8, the Pastoral Leaders adhere to the same groups of pupils throughout their school career. The House Tutor’s role is of paramount importance in a pupil’s school life. The daily contact between house group and House Tutor encourages the development of sound relationships between teacher and pupils. Close liaison between subject teachers, House Tutors, Pastoral Leaders and Vice-Principal ensures a comprehensive and caring framework, which helps to promote and nurture the individual pupil, within the pastoral care system.