Wemms believes that every member of our community has personal responsibility for their behaviour and is accountable for both the good and the bad decisions they make. We are mindful that once our students reach maturity and independence, they will not have either their parents, or their teachers imposing discipline and they will have to monitor and refine their own actions. Having a well-tuned moral code and quiet confidence in one’s ability to apply well-balanced self-control, is vital for success in 21st century Britain. Consequently, Wemms is a community with boundaries, and offers opportunities to reflect with a mentor and decide for oneself what needs to be done to make amends.
A calming environment
This philosophy ensures Wemms is generally a calm, peaceful environment in which everyone is secure. There are no irrational rules, just a commitment to treating everyone with the respect and compassion one would like to receive themselves. No detentions, lines, standing in corners or corridors; no public dressing-downs… just space to regain one’s self-control and discuss one’s feelings and behaviour objectively.
When members of our community are making poor decisions, they will be given time out, told why/what they are doing is inappropriate, offered time to reflect and, in discussion with a mentor, suggest a solution so all can move forward. There will always be the opportunity for all parties to explain their actions and frequently the solution does involve tolerance, a compromise and a two-way apology. If the student remains determined to ignore their opportunity to make amends, they will remain out of class until the change of lesson. During this time, they will be under the supervision of a member of SMT. Parents will be notified that their child will be required to attend school on Sunday, 10am-1pm. This is a uniformed session and will enable them to catch-up on the work they have missed by neglecting to make an appropriate choice. It is also an opportunity to reflect upon their actions with the Principal.
If the Principal becomes aware of an incident after the event, and there has not been an opportunity to make amends, the student(s) will be invited to discuss the incident with a member of SMT and find a resolution. In most cases, the resolution will take the form of an apology, a commitment to better behaviour and the agreement to undertake a small task that supports the smooth running of the school during a break period. Such activities include checking all toilets are flushed, collecting towels for washing and putting out towels where needed, emptying bins, putting coffee cups in the dishwasher, helping a particularly busy member of staff with photocopying/stapling or tidying a specific area. To help our younger students make good decisions, we may run a positive behaviour reward scheme which is tailored to the needs of the individual students.
Our fundamental boundary is that Wemms is a safe environment. Staff and students expect to live their lives in peace and not be witness to, or subject to physical violence. Anybody indulging in violence against a third party will be suspended from our community whilst decisions are made as to their future in Wemms. Staff and students are entitled to a stress-free, productive environment which enables all to excel. We do not appreciate bad language, defiance, disrespect or conflict. We consider people indulging in such behaviour to be making poor decisions that should be challenged and overcome. Wemms’ policies We have policies and procedures in place to ensure that our school is run in line with best practice and within the law. These policies are regularly updated and are informed by Government and other relevant legislation, empirical evidence and advice from leading independent schools and our Advisory Board. They cover:
- Health and Safety
- Teaching and Learning
- Behaviour and student expectations
- Staff and safer recruitment All our policies are available via our website here:
Emergencies and first aid
Wemms believes everyone should be trained to react to a medical emergency. The majority of Wemms staff are qualified first aiders and many are trained in the administration of EpiPens. All students in years 11-14 who were with the school in 2018-19 are also fully qualified first aiders. All younger students who were in the school 2018-19 have completed a three-hour emergency first aid course. In addition, many members of the teaching staff are trained in the correct administration of medicine and there are qualified doctors within the Science faculty.
First-aid kits and eye-wash kits are situated around the school. The school carries paracetamol but no other medication. As a number of our students are on prescription medications, Wemms will always ring for permission before allowing a student to take paracetamol. If you wish your child to carry their own paracetamol/painkillers, Wemms operates a four-tablet maximum policy and asks the parent to notify reception when their child is in direct possession of such medicine.
If you really must! Students should keep their mobile phones in a locker or pocket during and between lessons. If a mobile phone is seen out in class or between lessons, it will be confiscated. Students will be allowed to use them during break and lunchtimes. No personal computers may be brought into school unless cleared directly with the Principal.
Smoking is prohibited within the school compound and the current UK laws on the use of cannabis and illegal drugs are upheld.