Learning Mentor

Family Learning Mentor

In our school, we have a Family Learning Mentor.  Miss Ashworth is exceptionally good at her job. She is a qualified teacher, but prior to teaching, she worked for 9 years with the Family Health and Wellbeing Service. She constantly updates and extends her training. 

The Family Learning Mentor works within school to help children and families with any difficulties they may be experiencing.  They are there to listen, offer support and practical advice.  They are informal educators.

A Family Learning Mentor is here to:

  • Listen
  • Offer support
  • Promote positive behaviour
  • Offer encouragement and build self-esteem and confidence
  • Identify the barriers to learning and set targets

Who does the Family Learning Mentor work with?

  • Individuals and groups of children
  • Teachers and other members of staff i.e. support/welfare staff
  • Schools
  • External agencies such as; Social Services, CCATS, Trinity Hospice, Educational Psychologist, CAMHS, Police, Health Professionals, Education Welfare Service, Sure Start, School Doctor/Nurse.
  • Community and Voluntary Organisations
  • Learning and Behaviour Support Services (Outreach)

The Role of the Family Learning Mentor

For Children

  • Build confidence, raise self-esteem, raise resilience  and motivation
  • Create and maintain an atmosphere of trust in which pupils feel able to discuss their progress, opinions, targets etc.
  • Improve social skills, form relationships with friends, family and staff
  • Improve attendance and punctuality
  • Remove barriers to learning such as behavioural difficulties
  • Help children to achieve their potential
  • Assist smooth transition to High School

For Families:

  • Improve support and communication between home and school
  • Access to outside agencies and someone to talk to in confidence
  • Someone to off load to, to help them cope during difficult times
  • Support with strategies for behavior, resilience, confidence building etc.

For school:

  • More effective and efficient communication between parents/ carers, teachers and outside agencies
  • Reduction in anti-social behavior
  • Make referrals for families to a range of outside agencies

Which children are likely to benefit?

There are many young people and families who may benefit from being supported by the Family Learning Mentor.

These children may include:

  • Poor attendees and/or late
  • Underachievers
  • Lack of self-esteem/motivation
  • Have difficulties at home
  • ‘Looked after’ children
  • Children with behavioural, social or emotional needs
  • Victims of abuse
  • Bereavement
  • Children that need support with the development of a healthy level of resilience
  • Children with medical problems
  • Children with learning difficulties that causes frustration and anger
  • Children that have suffered a trauma (for example a parent separation, family loss, family illness etc.)
  • Children who have had changes to the family dynamic;- new baby, house move, new partners, new step siblings
  • Children whose parents are having emotional difficulties
  • Children whose parents are going through difficult times, for example;- money worries, anxiety / depression, stress at work etc.

What strategies does the family Learning Mentor use to help a child further or reach their full potential?

WAVE 3 Intervention /Support

This is implemented when a child is classed as high need. It is 1:1 bespoke support mechanism that works alongside other agencies and professionals

  • Internal assessments to identify pathways for additional support from other lead professional
  • Early intervention – making connections with outside agencies to support with specific needs – Using the Fylde and Wyre pathway guidance
  • 1:1 individual support within school – for example behavioural programme –resilience/ anger management techniques / individual contact / individual reward system – linked to support from external agencies such as CAHMS
  • Close surveillance at lunch time and within class – monitoring logs in place – home school communications put in place
  • Completion of CAF/ Social Care referrals etc.
  • Support families

WAVE 2 Intervention / Provision

This is in house group provision for children where the whole school approaches (WAVE 1) are not enough and they need a little bit extra short-term support.

This is a short-term, early intervention that usually runs for a maximum of 12 weeks. The children are grouped with other children and access group sessions with the Family Learning Mentor on a range or areas. (See list below for examples).

  • Social Skills support
  • Friendship support
  • Small group circle time
  • Playing PHSE Games
  • Play development during playtimes – supported by Learning Mentor or a JLT Pastoral
  • Evaluations and discussions
  • Monitoring at breaks
  • Class behavioural support / reward systems- specific to child’s needs
  • Emotional support – feelings / stress / Anxiety coping mechanism / self-esteem and
  • Resilience support
  • Behavioural awareness and reactions support
  • Anger management

What can parents / carers do to help?

  • Discuss any concerns with the Family Learning Mentor
  • Talk to your child about concerns they may have and contact the school
  • Use the Solihull approach as outlined in this booklet
  • Seek advice and support from the Family Learning Mentor at any time
  • Attend parents evening
  • Keep up to date with school newsletters
  • Read school website on a regular basis.
  • Request literature / information from the learning mentor
  • Work in a partnership with school

The Family Learning Mentor is here to support, encourage both pupils and families to overcome challenges and any barriers to effective and creative learning both inside school and outside school.  In order for this to be achieved realistically, excellent communication between school and home is essential. 

The Family Learning Mentor – Miss Ashworth is  available for parents. She has allocated time every Friday afternoon to meet / phone parents but would deal with more urgent requests on the same day outside of her teaching commitment but within the working day. 

Please Contact Katie Ashworth on:-

  • Tel 01253 882226

Email  katie.ashworth@singleton.lancs.sch.uk

Support for parents 

As a school we annually produce a ‘Parent Handbook’. This gives an A- Z helpful guide to all aspects of school life. 

Parent Handbook

Miss Ashworth has found that a lot of parents request support around behavioural, social and emotional needs. Mrs Clayton has put together a supportive booklet for parents based on the Solihull Approach which is a highly recommend, renowned programme that has been developed for use by the NHS, Educational Psychologists and Educational establishments. 

This booklet is a really good read – it provides reassuring strategies to support parents but also gives examples of the typical developmental milestones for social-emotional and behavioural skills in school-aged children up to 12 years old.  Please click below for further information 

Parental Booklet – Behavioural Support.docx

Additional helpful resources for parents 

Please find below a range of information that you may find useful.