Young Carers at St John's

At St John’s we provide support and advice for our young carers and their families. Our young carers have two designated leads within the school- Mrs Pellant and Miss Pellant, who they can access at any point if they have a problem and need support. They also have an external support worker from ‘Young Carers Kent ‘Imago’ Saffron Coade, who comes into school to support the children and works with their families in the home.

Our young carers benefit from a monthly support session with Mrs Pellant, where they can share their concerns/worries or by means of their self initiated ’Worry Box` At these sessions they have enjoyed craft, gardening, games and activities and really enjoy having a new circle of friends that experience the same or similar responsibilities to them.

They have their own Notice Board in school, which signposts how they can access help internally and externally, this also shows visibly the pictures of both leads so that younger carers know who we are too. The Young carers art work is displayed around this notice board. Timetables of future ‘Young Carer Group’ meetings are posted around the school so that they know and are informed when they will happen.

All Teachers and Staff have been made aware of the Young Carers in our school. The Teachers and Staff of our Young Carers are made aware of the needs of individual young carers from their classes and how being a young carer may impact on their school and home life, support is given to them in how they can support with this. The Staff notice board has young carer information on it.

Young Carers at St Johns now benefit from their own garden; they have chosen to plant potatoes and placed some of their negative thoughts on slips of paper underneath potatoes so that they can grow into ‘positive growth`. They have asked to plant strawberries and tomatoes next, which will happen this term. So that our Young Carers voice can be heard and acted upon we provide a termly questionnaire to access how they feel about the support we provide.

The future at St Johns for our young carers looks very exciting, we are looking forward to an outing to a local craft café where they will experience pottery making and bring home their own hand painted mug, this has been enabled by accessing pupil premium money designated for Young Carers. Later we hope to go to a local community café where the children can learn basic cookery techniques.

We welcome our Designated Governor David Milham who is the Vice Chair of the Governing Body. He is supporting our Young Carers and brings support from our local Rotary Club for future Young Carer events.

At present we are putting forward our submission for The Young Carers in Schools Award and are taking up the new initiative Young Carers Passport system which enables young carers to gain discount on events and activities in the community. It also provides a visual and more discreet way to notify a member of staff of their young carers needs. It is paramount that as a school we support and listen to our Young Carers and we endeavour to meet their needs and empower them to ask and gain support from us.