The Dame plays a fundamental role in both the pastoral care of Eton’s pupils and ensuring that our boarding houses operate as effectively as possible. Supporting the House Master within a particular boarding house you will supervise and provide care for around 55 pupils. Together with the House Master, Resident Tutor (if applicable) and Dame’s Assistant you will ensure the physical, social, academic, and emotional wellbeing of every pupil within the House. As Dame you will have particular responsibility for the medical care, supervision and presentation of pupils, and play a pivotal role in caring for and nurturing boarders within the house.
The resident House team is normally comprised of four individuals: the House Master, a Resident Tutor, the Dame and a Dame’s Assistant. You will work as a team, led by the House Master, and you will directly manage the Dame’s Assistant, who will provide cover for you and deputise for you during your time away from the house. The houses are also supported by a variety of centrally-employed employees (such as housekeeping, maintenance and catering). As Dame you will have day-to-day responsibility for the overall standards of cleanliness and catering (if relevant) within the boarding house, and you will work closely with the Supervisors and Heads of these central teams to ensure standards are maintained.
Please be advised that the start date for this position is January 2021.
- To support and work with the House Master to ensure the efficient and compliant management of the boarding house, and to help develop a culture of mutual respect, tolerance and kindness within the house (amongst both pupils and staff).
- To promote and safeguard the welfare of the pupils for whom you are responsible, or with whom you come into contact, adhering to the school’s Safeguarding procedures and Child Protection Policy and processes at all times, reporting any concerns regarding actual or potential risks in line with the school’s policies.
- To provide a high level of pastoral care for individual boys through direct interest and personal support and through interaction and communication with the House Master and the rest of the House team.
- To create develop and sustain excellent working relationships with the parents, the House Master, Resident Tutor (if applicable), Dame’s Assistant, central staff and suppliers to ensure the smooth running of the House.
- To provide cover for the House Master and assume full responsibility for the House where necessary.
- To operate within the school's code of practice for health and safety, and its policies and procedures including pupil care, personal property, behaviour (including countering bullying and substance misuse), and child protection.
- To line manage the Dame’s Assistant, ensuring that performance is appropriately monitored, appraisals carried out, and when the role becomes vacant, effective recruitment is carried out.
- To attend regular meetings as required with the House Master, Deputy House Master, Resident House Tutor (if applicable), House Tutors, House Assistants and Dame’s Assistant, to ensure proper communication of pupil welfare concerns and any issues relating to the House, and with relevant members of central teams (such as the Cleaning Duty Managers and Catering Manager) regarding other matters of importance in the House.
- To work closely with the House Master to ensure an appropriate student recruitment, admission and induction process is delivered, which reflects the high standards of Eton, but which is tailored to the individual ethos of the House (for example this may include leading House tours, interviewing parents and prospective pupils, etc.).
- To attend House sporting fixtures (whenever possible) and College-wide events in support of the pupils within the House.
- To be jointly responsible with the House Master for the care, supervision, cleanliness, presentation of pupils and disciplinary ethos within the House, coordinating and liaising with other boarding staff as necessary.
- Responsible for the general health and wellbeing of pupils in the House, holding formal daily surgeries after each meal, and complying at all times with the school’s Medical Care Policy and internal protocols. In the case of any doubt or concern about a pupil’s health, referring matters to the school’s medical staff (e.g. the Health Centre or the Stephenson Centre for Wellbeing).
- Responding to medical emergencies and routine appointments, escorting pupils as needed to the surgery, hospital, clinic, Health Centre etc.
- Following Health Centre protocols, taking all appropriate measures to prevent pupils storing medication in their rooms or self-medicating without authorisation, and to administer (along with other signatories on the House Drugs Protocol) all medication to pupils in line with the College’s published Medical Policy.
- Accurately record the allocation of medication, including controlled drugs, to pupils using the College’s approved recording documentation
- To ensure the satisfactory provision of Chambers (mid-morning snack) and Messing Tea (afternoon snack) in terms of quality, allergy / health and safety considerations and behaviour of pupils during these times. The Dame is also expected to use these opportunities to spend time with the pupils whenever possible.
The Ideal Candidate
To be considered for this role you will need:
- Previous experience of pastoral care for children or young adults, and ideally previous experience in a similar role within a boarding school environment. An awareness of the Children’s Act, Safeguarding and Child Protection matters is also desirable.
- Good levels of literacy and numeracy.
- Proven experience of successfully undertaking complex administrative duties - experience of managing budgets would be desirable.
- To be confident using the Microsoft Office Suite of applications and the ability to quickly learn to use in-house computer software.
- Demonstrable line management experience.
- A nationally recognised First Aid qualification or the demonstrable ability to complete one immediately after appointment. An NVQ Level 2 (or equivalent) in Health and Social Care and /or a Professional Practice in Boarding Schools Certificate would be desirable.
- An understanding of Health and Safety practices; e.g. fire alarm testing and evacuation procedures, accident reporting, legionnaire’s testing, awareness of basic food hygiene and COSHH is also desirable.
A full list of responsibilities and skills and competencies required can be found in the Dame Job Description below
This role comes with the benefit of school- provided accommodation for you and your family. Accommodation is provided free of rent, council tax, buildings insurance and general maintenance costs.
The Dame position also has a generous salary scale and benefits of service, including:
- Generous pension scheme
- Enhanced Maternity / Paternity pay
- Bike-to-work scheme
- Give As you Earn scheme
- Counselling and legal advice services
- Eyecare plan
- Free use of sports and leisure facilities
- Discount at local shops and amenities
About the College
Eton - Town and School
Eton College is a friendly community with a family atmosphere. We are situated in a beautiful Berkshire town that offers excellent local schools and amenities. Historic Windsor is just across the river, and London is easily accessible by rail or motorway. There is enormous collegiality at Eton.
Eton College is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and an Enhanced Disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service.
We are committed to creating and sustaining an environment that values and celebrates the diversity of both staff and pupils. We believe in equal opportunity for everyone, irrespective of age, disability, gender, gender reassignment, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation or socio-economic background.