Hugo has had such a calming presence on the students. He is always so excited to see them in the mornings, welcoming them at the gate with a wagging tail. It always brightens up their day. Hugo is kept in the wellbeing office in the Sixth Form Square (hub) and is available for students to have cuddles during their wellbeing sessions. He is a really smiley dog and you will often walk into the Square to see him looking through the window showing a cheesy smile. Students often pop in to say hello to him or give him a treat at break or lunch. His favourite activity is to go outside with a group of students to play fetch. They take Hugo’s ball thrower to the grass area behind the Square to make sure he has a good run around at lunchtime. The students love having him about and love the option to sit inside with him or run about outside.
Hugo is technically a support dog, which means he is not a trained therapy dog. However, he is an incredibly well-behaved Cocker Spaniel who loves people. He is 6 years old and a massive softie! He thrives on human interaction and will spend most of the day on his back having a belly rub. He knows where he is allowed to venture and sniff but has made himself at home in the wellbeing office. He is aware when students are not comfortable with his presence and will often withdraw or seek attention elsewhere. It has been noted that when Hugo becomes more confident around students, he will bring them a toy so they can play together. In the coming months, Hugo will be there to support and comfort the Year 13s through their first ever external examinations.
Staff have also enjoyed having Hugo in school! Hugo is a regular member of Sixth Form and Pastoral Team meetings. Staff often pop in during their breaks and lunch to say hi and give him a quick cuddle before their next lesson. He has been a very welcome distraction for us all this term!
At the end of the day Hugo then goes home and usually spends the evening catching up on sleep, ready to do it all again the following day!
Both the Sixth Form and Hugo have their own Instagram pages which document his days at school: