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St. Paul's Community Development Trust

Over the last six months plus we have been discussing the benefit of having a school dog at both the secondary and primary schools. Academic research has shown that dogs working and helping in the school environment can help to achieve the following:

  1. Improve academic achievement
  2. Increase literacy skills
  3. Calming behaviours
  4. Increase social skills and self-esteem
  5. Increase confidence
  6. Teach responsibility and respect to all life
  7. Help prevent truancy
  8. Motivate children who are often less attentive

After much research and discussions with primary stakeholders and other SEN schools and colleges who have successfully introduced a dog, we feel ready to make this commitment. I am really pleased to now introduce Simba!

Simba - School Dog

Simba will be owned by Mrs Palmer and will live with her young family, so will have a great deal of contact with young children. We have looked into the various breeds that make successful school dogs and have chosen a Cockapoo, which is a cross between a cocker spaniel and a toy poodle. It will be a medium sized dog known for its friendliness. We would introduce the School dog as a puppy on a gradual basis, so it can become familiar with the school environments and then gradually meet the pupils.

We will be working with a well-respected Dog Trainer, Pawfect Dog Sense who have successfully introduced dogs into schools. The training will be provided for pupils, staff and Mrs Palmer’s family so there is a consistent approach to how Simba is handled.  We are all really looking forward to getting to know Simba, welcoming him into our school and ensuring he feels safe and happy!

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