School Children Welcome New School Dog

school-dogA bundle of fluff and joy has arrived at Valley Road School this term – Bisous the very cute Maltese school dog.

Bisous (French for kiss) likes to lick/kiss everyone, is 8 years old and is a rescue dog from a couple who broke-up and weren’t able to look after her. He’s perfect for a school dog as he is hypoallergenic and doesn’t moult. Year 6 teacher, Mr Shacklady put forward the idea of school dog after seeing one at Queen’s Anne School in Caversham on a visit there. He looks after her at home with his partner. Although it is quite a new thing, a number of primary schools in Oxfordshire also now have school dogs.

Mr Shacklady said, “School dogs are a great way of children learning how to look after an animal and one of the other key school-dog2roles for Bisous we’ve identified is for children who need their confidence building in reading will read to Bisous along with an adult.

At the moment Bisous is settling himself into school life in the Year 6 classroom. The children have come up with their own ground rules about having a school dog which include don’t distract Bisous and tell someone if she’s doing something wrong. The Year 6 children are enjoying the rota of taking Bisous for a lunchtime walk with Mr Shacklady and it is hoped that after a while Bisous will visit all the classrooms for all the children to enjoy.