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Seaford's Peer Mentors focus on wellbeing and pastoral care
Becca Randell joined us at Seaford this afternoon to run our Peer Mentor Training session along with our Pink House Team and Director of Sixth Form, Joe Follows. Fifty-five students from Year 12 attended along with Peer Mentors from last year. They learned about what it is like to be a Peer Mentor at Seaford and best practice for supporting other students.
The Peer Mentors are a volunteer group of around 40 Lower Sixth Form students who support pupils across the prep and senior school. Recognised by their pink lanyard badges, they are trained by the Pink House and are then available for students to talk to any time outside the classroom.
The Peer Mentors are able to choose where to operate; half of the group make themselves available in the senior school and can be seen, for example, chatting to students in the common rooms or Pink House. Half of them have volunteered to support children in the Prep School where they will be on hand at break times – some even run clubs for the pupils which are really popular.
The Peer Mentors are often drawn to the role because they have struggled in the past to deal with issues such as anxiety, bereavement, friendship difficulties, and family separation. This gives them a clear understanding of the issues many younger students are grappling with and forms another layer of pastoral support below the Pink House and tutors. Children sometimes find it easier to approach a Peer Listener than a member of staff to chat over a problem and, as extra pairs of eyes around the school, the Peer Mentors often alert the Pink House if they spot a student who appears to be struggling or vulnerable.
Director of Sixth Form Joe Follows said: “At the start of an abnormal year, it's great to see our pastoral ethos still shining and our brilliant Sixth Form still wanting to be part of it. Peer Mentoring is growing year on year and continues to be a vital part of our pastoral system in both our Prep and Senior School. In many cases, students would rather talk to another student in the first instance and this year will be no different.”
Students Daisy, Matthew, Brodie and Erin were at the training and added: It’s a great opportunity to get involved and it’s great to be able to make a difference. We get a lot of satisfaction from seeing a transformation in a younger child.” Mrs Jones who runs the Pink Room at the Prep School said: “Student faces light up when the Peer Mentors arrive in the Prep School - this is a very important role as the younger children look up to the Peer Mentors.”
Our guest speaker, Becca Randell, concluded by saying: “I’m delighted to return to Seaford College and I continue to be inspired by the pastoral ethos and dedication from the staff and students and the whole school's approach to wellbeing.”
- Becca Randell
- Peer Mentors