GSA Girls' Boarding & Day School 11–18

Priorsfield Road, Godalming, Surrey, GU7 2RH

Tel: +44 (0)1483 810551

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Induction for all boarders (Full, Weekly and Flexi)

We recognise that although starting boarding is exciting, it can at times be daunting and having a strong induction process will help combat any worries.  Boarding staff are in frequent touch with parents by telephone or email to ensure that all pupils are fully supported as they adapt to a new environment and new culture.

Integration happens successfully every year and, for those joining the Sixth Form, joining a well-established group of students is not a barrier to selection for leadership posts. In the last few years girls who are new to the school have been selected as Deputy Head Girls and new girls are always well-represented in the Prefects Team and as Heads of House.

The induction process starts before a boarder begins boarding!

Tasters sessions allow staff to get to know new boarders and vice versa, it is a time for questions to be answered and for new boarders to meet some friendly faces. We highly recommend girls take this opportunity.

We provide families with some helpful hints on preparing their daughter for boarding and also send new boarders a ‘passport’. This is then completed by the boarder and her family and returned to the Housemistress. It helps the boarding team learn a little more about each boarder so they can make provisions for the term ahead.

Each boarding house has a handbook that will act as a guide for both boarders and their families about procedures and routines in the house. It also contains all contact information for boarding staff. This is sent to boarders just before they start boarding and they are then given a copy on arrival.

New boarders are allocated a ‘buddy’ who is a current boarder either in the same year or year above. She will help the boarder settle in, find her way to meals, activities and help learn the routines of the house. She will be able to suggest who to talk to and how to go about sorting any worries or concerns.

On the first evening in boarding each new boarder will meet the boarding staff and have a tour of the main boarding environment. She will be shown how to contact staff during the night and what to do should a fire evacuation occur. The Housemistress (Hm) will also contact parents or guardians to let them know how the first evening has been. Usually this is by phone but due to time differences an email may be sent.

During the first week new boarders are monitored closely by their house staff. They will be shown the Medical centre and meet the school Nurse. The Boarding Prefect will meet with them and tell them more about the opportunities available in boarding.  The Housemistress or her Assistant (AsstHm) will meet with new boarders and run through handbook and any questions the boarder might have.

Over the next few weeks there will be different opportunities for new boarders to try different activities and to meet all the boarding staff. She will be given times to talk to her Hm or AsstHm to ensure she feels supported.  The Housemistress will be in regular contact with the Form tutor to ensure there is a ‘joined up’ approach to the care of each boarder. Boarders are encouraged to keep in contact with family and friends either through phone, email or letter.

Everyone takes a different amount of time to settle, there is no set time when induction stops, or when your buddy will stop looking after you.

‘At PF everyone will look after you for as long as you need them.’ Boarder 2015