UCS is different from many day schools in the commitment that we make to the pastoral care of our pupils. This is because our aim is to develop self-confidence, maturity and self-esteem - not just exam results. We believe that our route not only leads to good results at school but by producing well-balanced and assured school-leavers, to continuing success thereafter.
The UCS Code of Conduct ensures that all members of the University College School community always treat others with tolerance, courtesy and respect. Deliberate cruelty, teasing, abuse, bullying and intolerance are always unacceptable. All members of the UCS community must always respect the school’s ethos and, in particular, its emphasis upon complete tolerance over differences of race, creed, gender, sexual orientation and physical disability.
The Headmaster aims to meet as many pupils as possible, from the youngest in the Lower School to the oldest in the Sixth Form, throughout the year. For example, he will meet with every Entry Form (Year 7) for lunch together with their Form Tutor and Warden. He takes a personal interest in the pastoral care of all pupils, through close and regular contact with the Lower School and Deme Wardens.
In the Lower School (Years 7 and 8), each pupil works with the same form tutor and Year Warden for two years. Their work is overseen by the Head of Lower School. This includes a competitive House competition in these two year groups with forms from both year groups paired together for this purpose. The Lower School also has weekly assembly covering a variety of topics, many of them run by senior members of the school.
At the start of the Middle School (Year 9) each pupil is allocated to one of the Demes, which is a unique feature of the school. The term derives from the Greek word ‘demos’ meaning a self-governing province of ancient Greece. There are six Demes; Baxter’s, Black-Hawkins’, Evans’, Flook’s, Older’s and Underwood’s. Pupils with siblings or parental alumni will normally join the same deme for continuity over time. Each Deme is run by its Warden together with a dedicated team of tutors to ensure each pupil receives the best form of pastoral care throughout their time at the school. There are strong links between the pastoral and academic systems to ensure support is cohesive between subjects. The Head of Middle School oversees the progress of each boy through the three years to GCSE.