Following a rigorous selection process, a number of Year 10 pupils have been selected as prefects. They have undergone training to develop an understanding of their roles and responsibilities and to ensure that they are ready to take on their duties as this year’s prefects leave the school.
The school treats the role of prefects very seriously and the inclusion of pupils in the running of the school as critical to effective organisation. At Saint Paul’s, the position of prefect is a position of responsibility and one which provides an important connection between pupils and staff. The Prefect Team has an important role throughout the entire school community: they are responsible for helping set the tone amongst the student body and for maintaining and enhancing the culture of Saint Paul’s Catholic High School.
The selected pupils took part in a training workshop to support their new role as prefects and prepare them to become effective leaders. The prefects must have the ability to communicate effectively with a wide range of people, including students, teachers and parents. Their role often involves effective problem solving, delegation, time management and negotiation, as well as acting as a mediator and support network for fellow pupils.
The school asked for applications from its Year 10 pupils, who were then interviewed and those successful have attended training so that they understand the possible issues they may encounter and know how best to offer support. The prefect training covered many issues including communication skills, the importance of confidentiality, leadership, teamwork and representing the school in a responsible and mature manner.
“The training was very well pitched, engaging the attention of the pupils from the start. They benefitted from the variety of physical tasks combined with a thoughtful approach to leadership and personality style. They contributed enthusiastically and kept focused,” explained Ms Stephanie Oldroyd from Saint Paul’s. “The pupils were able to gain a deeper awareness of themselves and of others, recognise how a great team behaves and enhance their team working skills. They looked at effective problem solving, improving their communication skills and developing their assertiveness for use in more challenging situations They were also able to gain an insight and understanding of how these skills are transferable to other situations in their future career plans.”
Miss Wilkinson, Deputy Headteacher at Saint Paul’s, added: “The training enabled the Prefect team to develop the skills that are necessary for effective performance. The position of prefect is a position of responsibility and one which provides an important connection between pupils and staff. Becoming a prefect is a valuable goal; it plays an important part in a pupil’s personal development and opens their mind to new levels of responsibility and participation in a very positive way.”
“The training, coaching and development of the pupils enables them to see how they can make a real contribution to the school,” commented Mrs Fiona Minshall, Head Teacher at Saint Paul’s. “The aim is for collective responsibility around school with students actively participating in the running and organisation of school activities.”
Mrs Minshall added: “Those selected need to be proactive and consider themselves prefects at all times, not just when performing designated duties. We put a great deal of time and effort into selecting and training our prefects as they will act as guardians of our high standards and as ambassadors for the school.”