The Purpose of House Systems in Schools
The House System is a traditional characteristic in British schools and promotes healthy competition, encourages team work and generally fosters good behaviour and hard work. Historically, a “house” referred to a boarding house within the school and the overall system was associated with more reputable schools in England. Even an independent school in New York adopts this long-established British tradition with their three houses; Braeburn, McIntosh and Russet.
At Wetherby Pembridge (the school mentioned above) and many other schools with a house system, each house will accrue house points. These are awarded as an acknowledgment of various achievements, including excellent manners, good grades, kindness to others etc. What’s more, on Sports Day the different houses tend to compete against one another. As a result, children are keen to do their best to help support the house as a whole, in all aspects of their school life.
Within the houses, students are often assigned roles, such as ‘House Captain’ or ‘House Prefect’. For students who receive these titles, they learn from a young age how to manage and be responsible for a larger group of people. For other students, they learn to respect their peers and those in a position of responsibility.
What’s more, pastoral care and other facilities are often provided on a house basis, particularly at boarding schools where parents are absent. In this instance, children are likely to rely on the school to look after their physical, social and emotional needs.
Overall, the house systems in schools are a great way to help students feel a sense of belonging within the wider school community. They provide opportunities for students to develop various skills, such as social, physical and intellectual. Generally speaking, a house system is a fantastic aspect of any school.