St Leonards School has been named the winner of the Boarding Research Award 2022 in the nation-wide BSA Supporting Excellence Awards. This award recognises the research undertaken by Jenn Murray-Turner, Housemistress of Bishopshall - the Senior girls’ boarding house at St Leonards - as part of her Master’s in Residential Education. Complementing the School’s commitment to creating supportive ‘homes from home’ and a world-class experience in which our boarding pupils can flourish and be prepared, Ad Vitam, for life, Jenn’s dissertation delved into what effective pastoral care looks like in a boarding environment.
St Leonards is known for its innovative and pioneering approach to education, and in particular its commitment to sector-leading boarding provision.
Simon Brian, Head of St Leonards School, said: “Our approach to leading a first-rate culture of boarding is rooted in supporting the wellbeing of young people, helping them to develop their resilience, confidence and self-belief. As part of our unswerving commitment to constantly refine and improve our educational provision, we are delighted that staff undertake research projects which allow us to drill down into all areas of school life.”
Boarding at St Leonards is a unique experience – one that is rooted in tradition, but progressive and international in outlook. Full, flexi and weekly boarding is available from age ten and, thanks to an ambitious £5 million refurbishment programme, the houses have been beautifully modernised, with state-of-the art kitchens and study spaces. They truly are a ‘home from home’, with a vibrant programme of evening and weekend activities complementing the wider International Baccalaureate curriculum and co-curriculum. What makes boarding at St Leonards, and indeed the school community at large, such a special and formative experience is the people and exceptional pastoral care, the focus of St Leonards’ nationally-recognised research.
“We are delighted that Jenn’s research has received national recognition, and even more importantly that her research will benefit the pupils in our care and enable them to flourish as learners and individuals through the new initiatives and training programmes implemented, including timetabled drop-in sessions and mental health first aid training for residential staff, to name just two examples,” added Simon Brian.
Housemistress Jenn Murray-Turner said: “The wellbeing of our pupils at St Leonards - and indeed in any boarding school or residential environment - is of paramount importance, and it is so wonderful to be recognised as leading in this area. I hope that this award will continue to inform and inspire best practice here at St Leonards, for both our boarders and our wider day pupil community, and at other schools.”
Looking to the future, St Leonards will continue to research and develop its boarding and pastoral care, implementing strategies to support current and future pupils and disseminating its findings to ensure that its sector-leading research benefits pupils across the UK and further afield.