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Fleetdown

Primary Academy

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Fleetdown

Primary Academy

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All About Our School Dogs

Nora and Marley are our school dogs. They have been attending school since February 2022. Just like all of our new children, it took them a little while to fit in. We spent the first couple of weeks showing them around the school site - it's amazing how much there is to see. Marley especially likes snoozing in Mr Davies' office and Nora loves the playground.

 

Marley and Nora are to undertake training to work with children who have special needs, or who are upset in any way and in need of calm, comfort and space before being able to tell an adult what has upset them. Marley, Nora and Miss Egonu attend training classes and also school dog training classes which happen inside and outside school over a period of months. Marley and Nora will always be supervised by Miss Egonu our Executive Head or Mrs King our SENCO.

 

Marley and Nora will spend their days in school visiting the classrooms and listening to readers from across the school. Sometimes they will even help us out by looking after anyone who is feeling a bit sad - a little stroke and a look into those big brown eyes is enough to make anyone feel happy again.

 

There are many benefits to having a school dog, including:

 

  • a calming effect on pupils, particularly those with behavioural or learning difficulties
  • improved behaviour and concentration, reduced stress and improved self-esteem
  • encouraging expression and participation in more withdrawn children
  • fostering a sense of responsibility
  • motivating pupils to think and to learn, as most children have a high level of natural interest in, enthusiasm for and enjoyment of animals
  • encouraging respect and thereby improving pupils’ relationships with each other, parents and teachers
  • teaching children to nurture and respect life
  • helping work undertaken with the most vulnerable children, and educational improvements with low achievers
  • helping children build confidence in reading

 

Please look at the link below

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2011/feb/28/dogs-listen-to-children-reading

 

We are aware that some parents, teachers and children may be unsure around dogs and we have organised a series of school assemblies to take place by the charity “Dogs Trust” so that all members of our community are aware of what to do and more importantly what not to do around a dog. Our dogs will also be available to work with children (and adults) who have had bad experiences with dogs or other animals.

 

With parental permission, over a period of time children who react fearfully to dogs will be supported in approaching, handling and gaining confidence in managing their fear. While the dogs' main place of residence will be an office area, which is secure and separate from the classrooms, children will able to interact with the dogs under strict supervision at certain times of the week as long as parental permission has been given. The dogs will not be given access to other visitors without supervision or mutual consent. Please understand that we will do everything we can to reassure children who are fearful and that under no circumstances will they be forced to meet with the dogs.

 

Whilst moving around the school, Marley and Nora will be kept on a short lead and will always be with an adult. 

 

Please look at the risk assessment via the link below

 

Together Everyone Achieves More

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