Deira International School’s efforts in providing outstanding pastoral care for its Year Six students have been internationally recognised at the British International School Awards (BISA), the inaugural awards ceremony developed by British International Schools magazine.
The Pastoral Care Initiative award recognises a school’s efforts to support pupils’ wellbeing, and the judges conferred the award to Deira International School for its effectiveness, sustainability and success in easing the transition of Year Six students from Primary to Secondary school life.
The school identified the need to develop a unique hybrid transitional structure that would allow both Primary and Secondary teaching, learning and pastoral strategies to complement each other over a full academic year for its students in Year Six. The students begin the year located in the Secondary building on the school’s Dubai Festival City campus, with the familiar routine and expected behaviours of Primary Key Stage 2; by the third term, they are fully integrated into Secondary school life, avoiding the immediacy of a transition which can impact on students’ academic and social performance.
The year group now falls in line with the British Curriculum’s Primary assessment cycle to ensure continuity throughout Key Stage 2 whilst providing rigorous and robust assessment data for the school’s Secondary Leaders, resulting in greater collaboration, consultation and sharing of good practice. Following implementation of this transitional structure, the school has also received an ‘Outstanding’ rating for its pastoral care from the Knowledge and Human Development Authority of Dubai.
Ian Ward said: “This unique approach has had such a positive impact on our students’ achievements both academically and pastorally, they truly are Secondary ready. The teachers have really embraced this programme and all their efforts have been rewarded by winning such a prestigious award.”
The BISA Pastoral Care Initiative award was presented to Ian Ward, Primary School Principal, Deira International School, at an awards ceremony in London on 23rd January.
Pictured here are, from left to right, Mike Orr, Year 6 Teacher, Jacqui Visser, Year 6 Teacher, Jeff Smith, Director, Natasha Higman Year 5 and 6 Phase Leader, Sarah Hoodless Head of Year 6 and Ian Ward, Primary Principal.