The Pastoral Team

Miss N Harding – Pastoral Lead



Mrs C Mundee – Pastoral & Behaviour Lead (Licenced Thrive Practitioner)

Mrs M Toobe – ELSA

Mrs S Goddard – TALA


Mrs G Brooks – Pastoral Support Specialist Licenced Thrive Practitioner, TALA)

Mrs N Paine – Pastoral Support Specialist Licenced Thrive Practitioner, ELSA)

Mrs N Arnold – Behaviour Support Specialist (TALA)

Laura Barlow – ELSA


What do we do? 

Pastoral care is a provision from the school to make sure the physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing of pupils is cared for. The commitment to pastoral care feeds into everything the school does to ensure pupils have the best chance at success.

As a school we have a large Pastoral Team who work alongside children and practitioners in the school to deliver a number of pastoral interventions that are delivered by highly trained practitioners, who have worked with children and families through a variety of situations. Depending on need we offer tailored interventions to support both children and adults. 

Our specialist trained Therapeutic Active Listening Assistants (TALA) provide regular time for pupils to be able to talk and be listened to, allowing them an emotionally safe and supportive space in which pupils can explore feelings and experiences, supporting them during times of emotional or social difficulties. 

Our specialist trained Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSA) work with pupils to support and develop their emotional literacy skills. Sessions with an ELSA are structured and can support pupils in developing coping strategies and talk about any difficulties they may be experience, supporting a greater self-awareness and positive mental health. 

At Castle Hill Primary School, we have adopted a whole school Thrive Approach, supporting children with their emotional health and well-being. The Thrive Approach draws on the latest research from current neuroscience, recent attachment research, current studies of effective learning and current models of child development, in order to help us to understand the needs being signalled by children’s behaviour. Working with families and class teachers, our THRIVE practitioners carry out assessments of identified children’s social, emotional and behavioural needs which help us to build an Action Plan of targeted strategies and activities to help children re-engage with learning and life. The THRIVE approach is based on growing evidence that the brain develops through personal and social interaction. Through simple, repeated activities over time, within a safe and caring environment, THRIVE aims to compensate for interruptions in emotional development, when they affect a pupil’s ability to enjoy life and learn. 

We also have trained Bereavement Support Specialists who work with children and families, giving a safe and comfortable environment for them to discuss their experiences and providing opportunities to support pupils in managing emotions associated with a bereavement.

What is TALA?

What is ELSA?

What is The Thrive Approach

The Thrive Approach is a dynamic, developmental and trauma-sensitive approach to meeting the emotional and social needs of children.

It is through this that we aim to achieve our vision of a world in which children’s social and emotional needs are better understood and met.

Thrive supports children with their emotional health, wellbeing and social skills, all of which are needed to enable learning to take place. Children cannot always put their needs into words, but the way children behave can tell us a lot about how they are feeling. For some children there may be an obvious reason why they need extra support. This might be due to bereavement, family break down or an identified medical condition such as ADHD. For others, there may not be any obvious trigger as to why they are finding some aspects of school and/or home life difficult.

Using a positive relational stance with children, through play, creativity and the arts, the Thrive Approach helps them make the most of their learning opportunities.

Seizing these, and meeting developmental needs at the right-time, can help pupils become more resilient, open to learning and able to thrive.

It is this approach that ultimately makes a difference in the lives of pupils and enables them to fulfil their full potential.

In practice, Thrive offers primary settings practical strategies that support optimal social and emotional development and make a lasting difference. This can involve creating dedicated Thrive spaces, engaging children in art activities that reduce stress and developing an underlying focus on the wellbeing of pupils, staff and parents.

For more information -

Pastoral Support

Our team offers support and guidance for families experiencing difficulties and provides a link between home and school to try and resolve any issues at an early stage.

The aims of pastoral support at Castle Hill Primary:

  • To provide support that meets the differing needs of all children so that each child is equipped with the skills to cope with life.
  • To support children to address social, spiritual, mental, emotional and physical needs.
  • To maintain an atmosphere in which children feel secure, are encouraged in their learning, growth and social development and know that they are valued within a healthy and safe environment.
  • To reassure parents/carers their children are being educated in a safe and nurturing environment.
  • To work with a range of parents, support staff, outreach agencies and other schools to ensure the continuity and progress of individual pupils.

The role of the Pastoral Support Team:

  • To support and work alongside parents in addressing pastoral concerns impacting on their child’s learning and development.
  • To work with staff in ensuring good pupil support and build upon the caring and respectful relationships that exist between staff, pupils and families.
  • To provide pastoral support to individual and groups of children; listening and talking to children who may need support in a variety of pastoral issues, for example, self-esteem and confidence, bereavement, managing feelings, anxieties/worries, separation and developing social and friendships skills.
  • Responding to situations as they arise within school.
  • To ‘signpost’ families to outside services for appropriate provision and support.


Parent Voice

YPI (Young People's Independent) Counselling