The Mentor system has been in operation in The King’s Hospital for more than ten years now. It’s main aim is to ease the transition for new entrants to the school by providing them with an assigned ‘ Mentor’ who meets with them at the beginning of their school life here. Our main focus has been the Form 1 pupils coming to the school but we have also always made provision for the new entrants to other years.
We typically appoint between ten and sixteen Mentors depending on demand. These are chosen in consultation with the various Housepeople from a list of Form 4 pupils who have made a formal application for the post. The application is available at the end of The Mentor Seminar given by Dr Brendan Byrne in the month of May.
The duties of the Mentor vary depending on the Boarding Houses. A typical task in the boarding house would involve supervision of the dorms at bedtime one or two evenings a week. While the Day Mentors might supervise the locker areas, during break or lunchtimes and would then get a chance to chat with their charges. We would also work with The Special Needs department where the Mentors would provide support to those pupils coming to the school with particular difficulties. These pupils would be assigned a Mentor for the first term to help that pupil with daily, routine matters.
It is very obvious that the system is of enormous benefit to the new entrant to our school but Mentors too, benefit from an active participation in the programme, a programme that can impact very positively on their own personal development.
Cara O’Donoghue - Mentor Co-ordinator