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A caring community 

Wellbeing is at the heart of the Westminster philosophy, creating a place where all of our students can flourish. A dedicated Wellbeing Committee made up of representatives from staff, students and parents provide guidance around this topic and any related issues. Each of our students can also draw on a robust support network, starting with their class teachers and Head of House, extending all the way to our School Chaplain, Student Services Officer, and our Head of Wellbeing to name only a few. 

All of our students participate in Wellbeing@West and we are a partnership school of the Resilience Project, which teaches positive mental health strategies to build the capacity to deal with adversity. Students engage in weekly lessons and activities around the key principles of gratitude, empathy, mindfulness (GEM) and emotional literacy. Our approach is informed by the PERMA+ framework, which focuses on fundamental building blocks that support a thriving life.

At Westminster, we believe that wellbeing underpins learning, achievement and engagement. We foster a positive education approach to wellbeing through the PERMA + Model. This involves both a proactive and a reactive approach to wellbeing. Together, we are supporting the emotional and social growth and development of our students to thrive and flourish.

Anna Partridge, Head of Wellbeing

Our House System

Our well-established House system is a primary conduit for our pastoral care and wellbeing programs. It also forms the basis for friendly intra-School competition for sports days and other activities. Students from all age groups within their respective phase are assigned to one of six Houses in the Preparatory School and one of ten in the Senior School. Houses elect leaders to take on positions of responsibility, both within the House and the wider School. They also organise community service and fundraising projects, often involving parents.

In the Senior School, Year 7 and 8 students are assigned a class group with a teacher responsible for their care and welfare, supported by the Heads of Year 7 and 8. From Year 9 onwards, pastoral care is overseen by the relevant Head of House, with assistance from tutors, and guidance under the direction of the Deputy and Head of Senior School. With this in mind, the Head of House is generally the first point of contact for parents, as they will have an overview of all of their respective students. House tutors work with smaller groups and have daily contact with students, and each House also has regular meetings involving all its members. 

The names of Houses in the Preparatory School are inspired by the Westminster complex in London, while the Houses in the Senior School are named after individuals of great vision and leaders in the founding of our School.

Our Chapel

Westminster is affiliated with the Uniting Church, and we warmly welcome families from all religious and secular backgrounds. The Sir Shirley Jeffries Memorial Chapel is the spiritual heart of our School and all students go to a service once a week with their particular class, Year or House group. We see this as a space to engage meaningfully in various aspects of worship and celebrate communal life, and believe it is important that students make their own informed decisions around faith and spirituality.

Community is one of our integral values at Westminster, and Chapel services are a key expression of this. This is a place where respect, individuality, belonging and compassion are all cultivated. Students are encouraged to share messages and connect in creative ways, including music, drama, worship, readings, multimedia and prayer. Chapel services at Westminster vary in style and many dimensions of personal reflection are encountered.

Our Chapel is part of the broader program of community engagement we offer as a School. Pastoral care, personal support, home and hospital visits, family support, and mediation are all provided by our Chaplain. These services are made possible by the National School Chaplaincy Program, funded by the State Government Department of Education and Child Development which is funded in turn by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training for this purpose.

Chapel is a calm and quiet time and place in busy student weeks. It is a space which invites reflection; to, for a moment, review our living and seek for peace and faith.

Reverend Phil Hoffmann, Westminster School Chaplain

Co-Curricular Program

At Westminster, an expansive scope of co-curricular opportunities is offered to students with each program designed to engage them physically, academically, interpersonally, or intellectually.