Book Chapter

The pastoral role of a teacher



Jones J & Rushton E (2023) The pastoral role of a teacher. In: Gibbons S, Glackin M, Rushton E, Towers E & Brock R (eds.) New York: McGraw Hill.

Introduction: The purpose of this chapter is to support you as you prepare for aspects of the teaching role which exist beyond that of a subject teacher, with a focus on the pastoral role of the teacher. A key question to consider at the outset is, what do we mean by the term ‘pastoral care’, both in theory and in practice? Calvert (2009, p.267) describes pastoral care as, ‘the term used in education in the United Kingdom to describe the structures, practices and approaches to support the welfare, well-being and development of children and young people’. Pastoral care is centred on both the immediate needs, as well as developmental needs of pupils so that they can develop the personal and social skills and understanding that will support them throughout their lives (Calvert & Henderson, 1998). The opportunity to provide pastoral care as part of the role of teacher is often a compelling reason that motivates people to join the profession, with the chance, the privilege, to work with young people and have a positive impact on their lives and futures (Rushton et al., forthcoming). At the beginning of your teaching career, you are very likely to have responsibility for the pastoral care of pupils through being a Form Tutor. The work of the Form Tutor cuts across subject specialisms and emphasizes study and coping strategies as well as personal, vocational and life skills, creating a multidimensional role (Startup, 2003; Cefai, 2008).

FundersUniversity College London
Publication date31/12/2023
Publication date online31/03/2023
PublisherMcGraw Hill
Publisher URL…ct-options-title
Place of publicationNew York

People (1)


Professor Lizzie Rushton

Professor Lizzie Rushton

Professor of Education, Education