The Vertical House System
The vertical house system provides a strong foundation for pastoral care and wellbeing at the College, providing boys with a feeling of mateship and a sense of belonging from the day they enter Champagnat Catholic College. A House is a vertical grouping of students within the College, comprised of students from each Year level. Each of the four Houses has approximately 180 students from Years 7 to 12.
Within the House there are tutor groups led by staff as House Group Leaders (HGL’s). Upon enrolment, each student is placed in a House and a House Group within that House, where there is a small number of students from each Year group. The boys remain in this house for the duration of their time at the College and over time takes on a more senior role in the mentoring of the younger students into the College.
The House System provides a structure within the College that promotes belonging and continuity among College families and staff allowing students to be known more closely and thus cared for more effectively. Loyalty and commitment to a particular group are fostered over time.
The House Model offers many strengths and benefits including:
- a culture of students understanding and caring for each other across the whole College
- building a sense of belonging and community within a House Group, fostering positive relationships
- promotion and fostering the elements of the Marist Charism including family spirit and presence
- building the leadership capacity of all senior students as they take increasing responsibility as leaders within their house and mentoring of middle school students during the Learning Matters Program
- provide leadership roles for students including House Captains, cross-age tutoring, and House Council
- House Group Leaders getting to know the students in their tutor group over their six years at the college and assisting to personalise their learning and aspirations through formalised target and goal setting
- encouraging participation in the co-curricular activities provided within the College between houses developing in student's habits such as neatness, faithfulness to homework, use of diary, wearing of uniform and punctuality. The same principle applies to identification and addressing student problems early, rather than allowing them to develop.
The Role of the House Coordinator
The House Coordinator holds the primary responsibility for supervising the whole education of each student in their care. They ensure that each student’s experiences enable them to develop into well-rounded people. By knowing their students, the House Coordinator will help them discern their special talents, rejoice in them, develop them and put them at the service of others in a community of faith on a journey towards God.
House Coordinators work in partnership with the range of staff at the College, all of whom unite in the spirit of Marcellin Champagnat to put the student’s welfare first. They also work in partnership with the student’s House Group Leader, meeting regularly with them to discuss the progress of students in each House Group.
Within the House, each boy belongs to a House Group. Each House Group Leader participates in the formation of each boy as the House Group meets daily. This smaller group enables boys to meet informally and gives them the opportunity to develop leadership skills.
The House Group Leader will interview each boy in his or her House Group at the beginning of Semester One to discuss and set targets for the upcoming semester and year. It is also made clear to the boys that their House Coordinator and their House Group Leader are always available for help in academic progress and subject choices, co-curricular involvement, and spiritual development.