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An Ethos of Safeguarding Each Other

At Thurston Community College we consider safeguarding to be everyone’s responsibility and as such our College aim is to create an environment within which every student has the opportunity to be healthy, stay safe, enjoy and achieve, make a positive contribution and achieve economic well-being.

Through a broad and balanced curriculum (including Personal, Social, Health and Careers Education (PSHCE), assemblies, academic tutoring) we aim to create an atmosphere in which everyone, regardless of race, creed, gender, culture or ability, is aware of their right to be valued, respected, listened to and believed. We wish all students to know that they do not have to accept the actions of others towards them without question and that they are entitled to share their concerns within or outside the College community.

All staff and regular visitors will, through training and/or induction: know how to recognise the signs and indicators of abuse; how to receive a disclosure from a child; how to manage this thereafter. All such information is passed to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) and/or Alternate DSL to ensure that the best support is in place. We will endeavour to work in partnership with other agencies, and seek to establish effective working relationships with parents, carers and other colleagues in line with statutory legislation Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018.

Our Early Help Offer in College

All our staff will try to meet the safeguarding needs of your child through a coordinated offer of early help. Providing early help is more effective in promoting the welfare of children than reacting later. ‘Early help’ describes the type of early intervention and support that can be provided when a child or family’s needs may not be being met by routine universal services but does not meet the threshold for a specialist service. This includes providing support as soon as a problem emerges, liaising with the DSL, and sharing information with other professionals in order to support early identification and assessment, focusing on providing interventions to avoid escalation of worries and needs.

Any child may benefit from early help, but all College staff will be particularly alert to the potential need for early help for a child who:

  • is disabled and has specific additional needs;
  • has special educational needs (whether or not they have a statutory Education, Health and Care Plan);
  • is a young carer;
  • is showing signs of being drawn in to anti-social or criminal behaviour, including gang involvement and association with organised crime groups;
  • is frequently missing/goes missing from care or from home;
  • is at risk of modern slavery, trafficking or exploitation;
  • is at risk of being radicalised or exploited;
  • is in a family circumstance presenting challenges for the child, such as drug and alcohol misuse, adult mental health issues or domestic abuse;
  • is misusing drugs or alcohol themselves;
  • has returned home to their family from care;
  • is a privately fostered child.


Early help can take various forms and may include (but is not exclusive to): 

  • Meeting with the family
  • A SEND Referral
  • A Hub Referral
  • Consultation with the DSL and/or APYL
  • Before / After School Clubs
  • Consultation with the Education Welfare Officer
  • A referral to the School Nursing Team
  • A referral to County Inclusion Support Services.

If you are struggling as a family and it concerns at least one of your children attending the College, then you may wish to complete a Common Assessment Framework with your child’s Assistant Principal Year Leader. This process will help you work with people such as teachers, health staff and other lead professionals to gather, understand and share information about what is happening in your family's life and what solutions can be determined for you and your child. More information about this process can be found at: https://www.suffolk.gov.uk/children-families-and-learning/common-assessment-framework-caf/common-assessment-framework-caf-information-for-families/#tab1


Advice and Guidance for Parents/Carers

If you wish to report a concern of a child at risk of harm, abuse or neglect, you can contact our primary Designated Safeguarding Lead, Mick Harkin, or any of our alternative DSLs on 01359 230885.

In case of an emergency outside of College hours (08:00 - 17:15), you can phone one of our staff on 07515 190335 and be put in contact with one of our Designated Safeguarding Leads.

Alternatively, you can call one of the following:

  • Customer First on 0808 800 4005 (the first point of contact for social services)
  • The Police on 999
  • The NSPCC child protection helpline on 0808 800 5000

You can also find useful information and guidance on the Suffolk Local Safeguarding Children Board website at http://suffolkscb.org.uk/.

There are also other useful contacts for you to consider listed below:

Mick Harkin

Mick Harkin

Designated Senior Lead (DSL) (Student Support Manager)

Mr Stefan Stoneman - Alternative DSL Stefan Stoneman
Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal)
   P Potter

Paul Potter

Alternate DSL (Vice Principal & Head of Sixth Form)

   S Ahmed

Shabnam Ahmed

Additional Alternate DSL (Head of Year 12)

Alex Baker - Additional Alternative DSL (Assistant Principal House Leader - Rendell House) Alex Baker

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)

   G Chubb

Graham Chubb

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)

Additional Alternative Designated Professional Pippa Cooper

Additional Alternate DSL (Head of Year 13)

Additional Alternative Designated Professional Sarah Dunsdon

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)

Additional Alternative Designated Professional Winston Ewers

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)

Additional Alternative Designated Professional Rebecca Harper

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)

    Kelly Myhill

Kelly Myhill

Additional Alternate DSL (Assistant Principal Year Leader)


Angela Branfield  Designated Governor for Safeguarding Angela Branfield
Designated Governor for Safeguarding