Pastoral care remains at the very heart of all we do in NLCS Dubai. Our students are cared for with individual attention and support and guided to achieve their potential through close relationships with our teachers thus allowing them to flourish. Here at NLCS Dubai we provide a personalised pastoral programme which strengths-based and restorative facilitating our students to reflect, explore and thrive, becoming the best versions of ourselves. Our core values of care, courtesy and consideration are highly valued and modelled by all in the school.
Our form tutor system is vertical in nature allowing students from each grade in 6-10, and in the Sixth Form to interact with each other creating close supportive peer relationships in school. The systems of support which surround each student in our school is multi-faceted ensuring students always have someone to talk to. Our tutor groups are purposefully small in size with two form tutors assigned to them allowing for individualised care and attention. They are supported by their relevant Head of House or Head of Sixth Form, as well as our counselling and medical team, and the Vice Principal of Pastoral Care.
It is important to us that every child in our care feels safe, valued and support.
At NLCS Dubai we are very proud of our House system which runs throughout the entire school. Students are placed within one of four Houses which were created by our founding students and staff in 2017. The purpose of the House system in the Senior School is twofold. Firstly, each student and their family belongs to a community within a community. This sense of family is central to the NLCS Dubai pastoral care system. Secondly, within their House, students are able to work with each other, across and within grades and to compete against other Houses via the extensive House competition schedule. This competitive element of school life covers as many interests and skills as possible from the traditional sports day to house art, chess, public speaking, drama, music and many more throughout the year.
Leading each House is one of four Assistant Principals (Head of House) who look after the wellbeing and progress of students in grades 6-10. They each oversee a team of tutors who work with students on a daily basis and are the primary contact for students and their families. These tutors are also placed in a House thus enhancing the family atmosphere that the House system brings to daily life in the school. When students enter our sixth form, students stay in their House but the main pastoral care role is taken over by our Assistant Principal (Head of Sixth Form) who works with the sixth form tutor team, University Guidance Counsellor and Diploma Programme Coordinator to ensure our older students are prepared for University and beyond. The House system at NLCS Dubai underpins our firm believe that every student is well known and cared for. It also facilitates this care being extended beyond the school walls and towards our wider community.
Hafeet House is named after the beautiful Jebel Hafeet. Jebel Hafeet is the only mountain in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, and is one of the highest peaks in the UAE. It is located in one of the national parks, and is incorporated into the Sheikh Zayed Network of Protected Areas.
Hafeet House strongly believes in the importance of family and of community, knowing that every member is there to support and encourage the other. A wolf was selected as the House mascot. Wolves are complex, highly intelligent animals who are caring, playful, and above all devoted to family. These characteristics resonate deeply with the values and ethos of Hafeet House. The House motto is “Our strength is in our pack”, which again draws on the importance of community and highlights how we are stronger when working together. The feeling of belonging and family within Hafeet House contributes to everything the students do in the House and the wider school community.
Jais House, named after the tallest peak in the UAE, is a House that includes and celebrates both the similarities and differences between its members. Jais’ House ethos is one of inclusivity and collective responsibility.
A Bear was chosen as the House mascot due to the huge diversity amongst the species. Whilst all bears are different, they all share a number of characteristics. They will care for each other, protect each other, teach each other and defend each other. This is demonstrated within Jais House via the care and encouragement provided between its members. The House motto is ‘Believe today, inspire tomorrow’ which describes how members of Jais House have an optimistic mind-set, one that encourages members to try new things out, give their best no matter what the outcome because by doing so, they can inspire each other and the wider school community.
Javi House is named after Javi Mountain which itself was named after the Spanish Traveller, Javier Guillén who climbed it during his trip to the Arabian Peninsula. Members of Javi live everyday by their motto; ‘Everything is Possible’. Javians are open-minded, confident, caring and flexible; key ingredients to explore new ideas and challenges, whilst demonstrating focus and resilience.
The Phoenix mascot symbolises balance and harmony and is known to be a leader, rising from the flames to seek out new opportunities. Student leadership runs throughout the Javi House and its importance is recognised and respected by all within the Javi community. Javians will support and believe in each other as a family, learning from their failures but also celebrating success together. Javi’s togetherness creates a strength and a unity that enables them to flourish in any given situation.
When students progress into the Sixth Form, the nature of their relationships within the school. As soon to be young adults, they are treated differently by teachers with a greater emphasis on personal responsibility and independence given. Students are encouraged to become leaders within the school community whether that is within our academic societies, houses, student-led committees, arts groups, sports teams or as members of ‘The Big 4’, our student leadership team. Our ethos of academic excellence remains and the challenges of the Diploma Programme allow students to dive deeply into their subject passions and to explore what path they might want to take next at university or elsewhere.
With low numbers in each teaching class, teachers are able to provide students with focused attention to stretch and challenge them in each and every lesson. The Sixth Form students are supported by a specialist team of tutors who oversee their day-to-day wellbeing in addition to the Head of Sixth Form, Diploma Coordinator and Universities Guidance Counsellor who all play a part in guiding students through their final years at school.
All students at NLCS Dubai have access to school counselling. We provide guidance and support for children and young adults, especially when they are dealing with academic, personal, or social pressures. The school counsellor encourages students to identify their goals and is available to listen to students’ concerns while helping them build on their strengths, so they can find effective solutions that can facilitate their academic, social, emotional, and personal development.
The counsellor may meet students individually or as part of a focus group and visit Form classes to offer guidance lessons. Along with the pastoral team, the counsellor works closely with teachers and parents to develop interventions and address the support needed for their academic and personal growth. Confidentiality and willingness are an essential part of school counselling. Students needs are always at the center of any type of intervention and the counsellor may refer students to an external mental health professional for longer-term support, if necessary.
Here at NLCS Dubai we take pride in nurturing physical and mental wellbeing of our students. We have a full time doctor, in addition to two school nurses, who work closely with the pastoral team ensuring all aspects of students’ health are looked after.
The medical team, under the supervision of Dr Mufaza Asrar, who is a UK qualified Family Medicine Consultant, make sure the school’s medical centre participates actively in the holistic wellbeing of children. Their role ranges from routine and emergency medical care, keeping up to date health and immunisation records, providing health education to students, communicating with and supporting parents on health related matters, ensuring a safe environment for children, and supporting the school leadership on health and safeguarding policies. The medical centre is run in line with the Dubai Health Authority guidance and meets their standards.
Together the medical, safeguarding and pastoral teams make sure the children are supported fully in their learning journey.
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