One of the first things people notice about HVGS is the overwhelming sense that students are really at ease with their school and each other.
We invest considerably in wellbeing, which means there is a strong focus and more specialists on-hand to nurture students’ sense of self and happiness.
Our supportive and integrated pastoral care model offers stability and consistency for each child, from the very early years.
Students enjoy their learning because we are a happy school.
Junior School Wellbeing
- Teachers are the daily touchpoint for students and families. Our teachers are valuable caregivers and are accessible and available to listen and discuss students’ social and academic progress with parents.
- The Friendly Schools Plus Program is an evidence-based program that supports social and emotional learning. The program promotes positive peer relationships, positive teacher-student relationships and explicit teaching related to emotions, social knowledge and social skills while reducing bullying.
- The Better Buddies Framework takes preventative action to reduce anti-social and bullying behaviour in schools. At HVGS, older children buddy up with younger children and participate in formal and informal activities. The annual Better Buddies Games is an excellent example of the caring and respectful relationships fostered between students in our Junior School.
- Three-way conferences are in place for students in Years 3 – 6 and incorporate the teacher, parent and student. The use of portfolios and reflections on the IB Learner Profile attributes is at the forefront of these conferences, allowing the student’s work and the student themselves to contribute to the feedback and goal-setting process.
- Interviews can be arranged with key personnel to discuss specific student needs or issues.
- Student diaries are an efficient communication device between home and school and help form positive work habits. Diaries double as reflection journals, providing students with opportunities to share their learning journey with parents.
“Happiness is one big word to describe HVGS. Birds chirp in trees and I feel warm, happy and where I belong.”
Senior School Wellbeing
A Stage-based structure ensures that all students are noticed, nurtured, and safe in the senior years.
- Each morning small groups of students meet with their Mentor. Mentor’s assist in monitoring each student’s social, emotional and academic welfare. Students’ daily interaction with their Mentor sets the right tone for a successful day at school.
- Students will have the same Mentor from Year 7 to Year 12. For students, things may change around them as they grow up, but their Mentor always remains a constant. Parents are encouraged to make the Mentor their first port of call with any questions they have about their children and there are opportunities to meet with these key staff members throughout the year as they grow to know every child from greeting to graduation.
- There is a Head of Year for each cohort and together with a Head of Stage, they work closely together to oversee the planning and implementation of wellbeing activities. Expert speakers and workshop facilitators are regularly invited to the School to work with our students.
- Our Head of Senior School oversees this team of people and has overall responsibility for students’ wellbeing and their associated academic development.
Respect & Responsibility
We believe in every child’s intrinsic worth and embrace a culture that treats all community members with care and compassion, dignity and respect. We live and breathe our core values and they are evident in every interaction and every action at all levels of our community.
Our four Houses – Barrington, Gloucester, Watagan and Liverpool – create a kaleidoscope of colour that bonds friendships, builds camaraderie, promotes healthy competition and supports connectedness.
The House system is interwoven into the HVGS student experience. All students K – 12 belong to a House for life. Students take pride in their House affiliation and through House activities, friendships are forged and social bonds are strengthened. It’s this sense of belonging that will support them through their entire schooling experience.
Second-generation students are allocated to the same House as their parents, keeping family traditions alive and well.
A Positive Culture
Together we took a pledge to stand together against violence and bullying. Our positive school climate and our values-rich culture reduce the risk of bullying at the School. In the instances where a concern is raised, it is dealt with deft and appropriate action.
“I was a bit of a ratbag at school. But nobody [at HVGS] ever gave up on me. Someone always had my back.”
Clare – alumna (paramedic & defence force officer)