St Gregory the Great School Family Support Project in Oxford
During 2006-7 Father Hudson’s Society was invited by St Gregory the Great Senior school in Oxford to discuss Family Support options with the Director of Overcoming Barriers to Learning, one of the Governors (responsible for Exclusion policy), the assistant Head responsible for Additional Learning needs and the Chaplain. A new post was agreed and advertised in the summer of 2007.
This was the first senior school to make the decision to invest some of its own resources in part funding and creating, with Father Hudson’s Society this new post. It was a brave decision and one that was deliberated on for over a year.
The decision was made in a time of great change for the school. In 2007 a completely new school was being built and two sites were being amalgamated into one.
The Family Support Worker started in September 2007.
She is a part of the OB2L team – the Overcoming Barriers to Learning team. This Department houses the Emmaus Unit, which embodies the School’s own approach to dealing with students who are experiencing difficulty with learning, behaviour and attendance .The unit has a non punitive approach to dealing with complex issues. The Department also has a firm exclusion procedure and approach to discipline .Also based within this Department are the Senco and the TA team .Chaplaincy has close links too.
Several benefits arise from only being based in one School, the Family Support Worker is able to attend the daily staff and team meetings, is on hand to deal with issues whenever they arise, she only has to develop relationships with one ( admittedly large ) staff team ;feedback can be almost immediate .
As well as supporting parents the Family Support Worker works directly with young people who have been referred.
The role involves extensive networking with other Statutory and Voluntary agencies, such as PCAMHS and the Police, for the benefit of the families being supported.