A whole-school approach
Student wellbeing is central to life at Joeys. Drawing on the Marist Characteristics, our aim is to develop men of outstanding character, with a strong mind and gentle heart. A whole-school approach to wellbeing focuses not only on our boys, but on all staff, including academic, professional, boarding and co-curricular staff, as well as parents, old boys and the wider Joeys community.
Our approach to student wellbeing includes universal (all students), targeted (small groups of students) and individualised interventions. This is led by the Wellbeing Team, which includes the Head of Student Wellbeing, the Mentor Program Stage Coordinators and the College Psychologists. A Boarding Coordinator, Assistant Boarding Coordinator and Academic Coordinator for each year group play a pivotal role in the academic care and pastoral care of every boy, whether they are a day student or boarder.
The Joeys Mentor Program is a key component of the College wellbeing approach. Every student has a Mentor Teacher and attends Mentor Group for 10 minutes each morning and for 40 minutes every Wednesday. It is shaped by three key areas; Faith Formation, including social justice education, Academic Endeavour, using the SJC STRIVE Learning Framework, and Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). The Mentor Program involves the explicit teaching of SEL to better equip our young men to self-regulate, self-manage, develop empathy, build resilience, make good decisions and create positive relationships – preparing them for a life as a Joeys Graduate. Regular time is set aside for staff professional learning to enable our Mentor Teachers to effectively deliver the Mentor Program.
The partnership between home and school is crucial to effectively support and enhance student wellbeing. The College regularly consults the P&F Committee regarding matters of student wellbeing and hosts regular Parent Wellbeing Seminars, with presentations from highly respected leaders in their field. Recent guest speakers have included Maree Crabbe discussing the impact of pornography on young people, and Dr Judith Locke on ‘Helping your Teens to become Confident and Capable’.
The College Counselling Team
St Joseph’s College employs three Psychologists, who apply their expertise to support students to achieve academic success, psychological health, and social and emotional wellbeing. To achieve these outcomes, the activities that the College Psychologists engages in are diverse and includes counselling, consultation, assessment, implementation of prevention and intervention programs and guidance through referral processes. The College Psychologists provide information and psycho-education to the student population, school staff, departmental staff and parents/carers. The College Psychologists endeavour to work in a consultative, resourceful and supportive manner with parents/carers, teachers, school administrators and external health service providers within the bounds of confidentiality.
The St Joseph’s College Health Centre is tasked with caring for the day-to-day health of boarders, providing a professional, on-site service. During school hours the centre also provides health care as needed for day students.
During term time the Centre is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is always staffed by a registered nurse. Local doctors are available on-site for bulk-billed consultations with boarders each weekday at 8am. Outside the doctors’ normal hours, students in need of a doctor are referred to Hunters Hill Medical Centre or the local hospital.
Boarding students who become unwell or injured report to the Health Centre where they are assessed, treated and, if necessary, referred on by the nursing sister. If a boarding student is unable to return to school he is put into a bed in the Centre and parents are notified as soon as practicable. If any student needs to be transferred to hospital parents are notified as soon as possible.
In addition to looking after boys when they are sick or injured the Health Centre is responsible for handing out medication, vaccinations, pre-sport strapping, referrals and monitoring boys with special conditions, such as diabetes, epilepsy and asthma. It also offers annual flu vaccinations to students, and is the contact point for parents needing to arrange special dietary requirements for their sons.
There are also two single rooms with a connecting disabled bathroom.