Tutoring aims to respond to the individual needs of the pupils within the boarding community and forms a vital part of the College's pastoral care structure through which it is committed to the highest standards of pupil welfare.
Virtually all full-time members of the teaching staff are tutors, and the team is supplemented by many experienced non-teaching tutors drawn from the wider college community. All receive training.
The Tutor's Role
In general, tutors take a friendly, informed interest in the pupils in the boarding house to which they are assigned, contributing to the life of the boarding house through social and extra-curricular activities, as well as through specific duties.
More specifically, each tutor is responsible for a small group of tutees, providing them with on-going support and monitoring. Tutors act as a sounding board for opinions, as a mediator and confidant, and they interpret and reinforce the standards and values of the College. They promote friendly dialogue and act as common-sense listeners through the sometimes choppy waters of adolescence.
Changes from September, 2011
The College has taken the decision to reform the Tutor System. The need for change has been partly in response to the growing complexity of Upper School academic profiles.
There is an increasing need for a more sharply focused, targeted academic tutor system, particularly in the Lower and Upper Sixth as pupils adjust to new expectations and begin the critical business of Higher Education planning. To this end, it is proposed to move from the long-established vertical tutorial system to a horizontal one. So, with effect from the Michaelmas Term 2011, houses will have one tutor team for the Lower School and another for the Upper School.
It is envisaged that, in so doing, tutors allocated to different cohorts within the school will be able to build up a level of knowledge and expertise associated with the specific academic profile and particular annual or biennial pattern for each cohort of the school.
Given the predominantly academic focus of the Upper School Tutor role and the need to work closely with Departments and Careers and Higher Education staff, it is anticipated that this role will be fulfilled by teaching members of Common Room. However, members of Common Room will still continue to work alongside Non-Common room tutors in the Lower School.
We are sure that these changes will improve the pastoral support system within the College. The intention being to meet the needs of Sixth Form expectations and assist in the crucial business of Higher Education planning, whilst still retaining the strengths of the current system, of which the College is justifiably proud.