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Pastoral Care

Pastoral Care

Supporting our learners in understanding their emotions forms the basis of our pastoral care package and is key to enabling their success.

We understand that many of our young people have experienced trauma at some point in their lives. Our aim is to enable our learners to understand and manage their emotions and develop a range of coping strategies which they can draw from.

Kirsty Cooper is our Inclusion Manager, Senior Mental Health Lead & DDSL. Emma Wilcox and Tracy Willcock work as our Learning Mentors/DDSL's. Kirsty, Emma and Tracy work with every child at Kassia providing interventions and support for all of our learners.

Kirsty, Emma and Tracy are always on hand to support learners when they become overwhelmed and anxious. Proactive in their approach Kirsty, Emma and Tracy work closely with our young people from their initial inductions to daily support right through to re-integration if/when appropriate.

Our learning mentors are skilled practitioners and are trained in therapeutic care, trauma informed approaches and mental health support. Learners are supported through daily interaction and guidance, timetabled 1:1 sessions focussed on area of need and small group pastoral interventions.

All learners have access to our learning mentors support. In addition to working with learners in school our learning mentors often complete home visits if learners are struggling attending school.

External Agencies

Kirsty, Emma and Tracy work closely with our External Agencies ensuring learners get the help and support they need.

Often coming into school to deliver sessions and group interventions all of our learners have full access to the wrap around pastoral care they need.


Agencies we work closely with:


Warrington Wolves Click Here

Complex Youth Team Click Here

Cheshire Police Click Here

NHS Health Team Click Here

We are with you Click Here

State of Mind Click Here

CAMHS Click Here

Local Authority Safeguarding Team Click Here

Phoenix Fire Boxing Club Click Here

Early Help Click Click Here

JJ Effect Click Here

Cells Project Cells Project

Squad Goals Click Here

Noise Academy Click Here


School Counsellor 

David Montoya has recently joined Kings Academy Trust as School Counsellor and will be supporting children at all Kings Academy Trust sites with counselling sessions.


David is a qualified and accredited Psychotherapist and Counsellor. He is an experienced counsellor of young people, having set-up and delivered a counselling programme at a pupil referral unit for children with behavioural, emotional and special educational needs. David has over 12 years of experience working with children and has been counselling children for the last 6 years.


He has a great deal of experience with child mental health issues including ADHD and autism. He uses a range of therapeutic models including play therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy and other models to help children cope with the demands of school life, help with social skills and help them deal with change and loss.


David is a big advocate of inclusion and ensures that children are not discriminated against for any reason.


LSAs are emotional literacy support assistants. They are school staff who have had special training from educational psychologists to support the emotional development of children and young people in school. ELSAs have regular professional supervision from educational psychologists to help them in their work. ELSAs help children and young people learn to understand their emotions and respect the feelings of those around them. They provide the time and space for pupils to think about their personal circumstances and how they manage them. 

Most ELSA programmes will last for 6 to 12 weeks, helping the pupil to learn some specific new skills or coping strategies. Clear programme aims (SMART targets) need to be set early on and each session has an objective - something the ELSA wants to help the pupil understand or achieve. The ELSA isn’t there to ‘fix’ the child. For pupils with complex or long-term needs, it’s unrealistic to expect ELSA support to resolve all their difficulties. Change is a long-term process that needs everyone’s help 

ELSA work should be fun – that’s what makes the difference. It isn’t a reward for bad behaviour. By building a positive relationship with challenging children the ELSA can help them think about and reduce their troublesome behaviour. It will take time, but will be worth it in the end. You can find out more about ELSAs at www.elsanetwork.org 

Below is from an article written by Sheila Burton, Area Principal Educational Psychologist, Hampshire Educational Psychology Service, she created the ELSA programme.

Programmes may focus on developing an understanding of emotions and increasing emotional vocabulary so that pupils are better equipped to express their feelings verbally, reducing the need to communicate through difficult behaviour. Managing anger and conflict, raising self esteem and improving social interactions are other key areas of focus. Some pupils receive support to help them recover from a family break-up or bereavement. Sessions need to have a clear objective and should incorporate a range of engaging practical activities to develop their emotional literacy. 

The ELSA plans support sessions to facilitate the young person in developing new skills and coping strategies that allow them to manage social and emotional demands more effectively. Each session should have its own objective that builds towards the longer-term aims 

The ELSA project is an example of the opportunities for influencing wide ranging change that occur when educational psychology services enter into innovative partnerships with schools. The psychologists provide knowledge and expertise that enhance the capacity of staff in school to understand and meet the social and emotional needs of their pupils 

Information for parents 

An ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) is a member of staff who is trained to support children in the development of their emotional literacy. 

What is emotional literacy? 

· Understanding and coping with the feelings about ourselves and others. 

· Developing high self-esteem and positive interactions with others. 

· Being emotionally literate helps children focus better on their learning. 

Some of the areas the ELSA may work on: 

· Recognising emotions. 

· Self-esteem. 

· Social skills. 

· Friendship skills. 

· Anger management. 

· Loss and bereavement. 

How does the ELSA work? 

· A regular slot during the school week for approximately 30-45 minutes. 

· Sessions can be individual or in small groups and tailored to the child’s individual needs. 

· Sessions are fun and might include role-play, games or art and craft activities. They include time to talk. 

· A pupil’s progress will be reviewed on a half-termly basis. 

As a parent/carer, how can you help? 

· By informing the class teacher if there are any issues that may be affecting your child. 

If you require any further information regarding Elsa, please contact Emma Wilcox, Learning Mentor: emma.wilcox@tkas.org.uk