Pastoral Care

A 'sector leading' approach to pastoral care: every girl, at every stage, feels supported and valued

Girls learn best when they are happy. It is a responsibility every member of staff at The Mary Erskine School takes seriously: the wellbeing of every child in our care.

Our pastoral care structure ensures that every girls, at every stage, feels supported and valued. All our guidance staff are advisers as well as teachers and encourage a relationship of mutual respect between adults and pupils.

At ESMS we have embraced the Scottish Government framework for “Getting It Right For Every Child” (GIRFEC). The welfare of every girl is at the heart of everything we do. Her wellbeing – academic, emotional, physical and social – will be nurtured by our caring, professional staff in partnership with families and outside agencies. Our aim is to ensure each girl is safe, healthy, active, nurtured, successful, respected, responsible and included.  

Dedicated guidance staff
Our dedicated guidance teachers each have specific responsibility for a small group of girls, who know there is always someone to turn to about academic, personal or social matters. As a parent, you will come to know your daughter’s guidance teacher who will be a permanent point of contact for you.

School Counsellor
They Mary Erskine School also employs a school counsellor who can offer girls confidential support on any personal matter they wish to discuss.

The Middle School
As academic demands increase and girls move through early adolescence, they need tailored support and guidance with regard to their busy school lives and their intellectual, emotional and social development. This support is provided in the Middle School (S1 and S2) by a Middle School Tutor who oversees their welfare for two years. Girls will join one of six Houses to which they will belong in both the Middle and Upper Schools from S1-S5. Each House group in each year comprises around 20 girls. The Middle School is overseen by the Head of Middle School and the Deputy Head of Middle School, each with responsibility for the team of tutors and both year-groups.

The Upper School
In S3, girls continue in their Houses which are led by a Head of House who has responsibility for girls until they leave S5 and move into our combined Sixth Form. This ensures continuity of pastoral care and provides a well-informed, experienced guidance leader who is the first point of contact for girls and parents alike in the Upper School. Heads of House will normally accompany S3 pupils during the outdoor education Carbisdale Project and provide further individual support during S4 and S5 where public examinations become an important focus. Each of the six Houses is common to both The Mary Erskine School and Stewart’s Melville College and this twinned structure fosters a sense of community, social interaction and mutual support.

The Sixth Form
Here, guidance is structured around smaller, university-style, co-educational tutor groups of around five girls and five boys, mentored by a Sixth Form Tutor who is the primary point of contact. Students are guided through their final year as they prepare for life beyond school. The Sixth Form is overseen by the Director of Sixth Form and two Deputies.