What to do if you have a safeguarding concern

If you are a student and you are concerned about your own safety or the safety of another student:

You can talk to any member of staff. All staff at the College are trained in safeguarding matters. You can be confident that we will listen to you and take any action necessary to keep you (or another student) safe, whilst doing everything we can to respect your wishes. You may wish to contact a member of the safeguarding team directly. Go to Reception or the offices on the Concourse, and ask to speak to the Safeguarding Lead.

The Safeguarding Team
Sarah Prince, Assistant Principal, Operational Safeguarding Lead
Email: princes@colchsfc.ac.uk
Room 220 (overlooking the concourse)

Jo Cadman, Assistant Principal, Designated Safeguarding Lead
Email: cadmanj@colchsfc.ac.uk
Room 126C (on the concourse)

Graham Rayner, Assistant Principal, Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead
Email: raynerg@colchsfc.ac.uk
Room 642 (Midsite foyer)


In addition, all Senior Tutors are members of the safeguarding team.

If you are a parent or member of the public and you are concerned about a student

Call the main College switchboard on 01206 500700 and ask to speak to one of the safeguarding team.

For pastoral, welfare or wellbeing issues which are not safeguarding concerns, please contact the relevant Personal Tutor or Senior Tutor.

Out of hours safeguarding information

The safeguarding team, including Senior Tutors, will endeavour to ensure that particularly vulnerable students remain safe during longer holiday periods by passing on information and concerns to parents/carers, other family members or external agencies as appropriate before the holiday period begins.

During term-time, within normal College opening hours, there will always be a member of the safeguarding team who can be contacted, but this will not be the case at other times. Students and parents should be aware that College staff will not usually check or respond to email during evenings and weekends and when on holiday. Students and parents should not expect an immediate response to any concerns communicated via email and therefore should not use this channel of communication if the issue is urgent.

What to do if you have a safeguarding concern when College is closed

If you believe somebody is in immediate danger, phone 999.

To speak to somebody about a child protection issue

  • Social Care (daytime) 0345 603 7627
  • Social Care (eve/weekend) 0345 606 1212

For serious mental health concerns (under 18s)

  • SET CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) 0800 953 0222
  • SET CAMHS (out of hours) 0800 995 1000

For serious mental health concerns (18 and over)

In case of crisis, phone Mental Health Direct: 0800 995 1000

The following contacts may also be useful for advice and help

Further information for parents and carers

Safeguarding is defined as:

  • protecting children from maltreatment
  • preventing impairment of children’s health or development
  • ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
  • and taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes

A “child” is anybody under the age of 18. However, we do not treat our students differently after their 18th birthday. Although referrals to outside agencies will be different for students aged 18 and over, the support available in College remains the same.

Specific concerns

Mental health difficulties

Mental health issues are very common amongst young people in the 16-19 age group and we are able to provide help and advice for our students via our Wellbeing Hub or Senior Tutors. We have a mental health support team based in College and we have our own College counselling service. These teams can provide help with anxiety, low mood and other issues. We can also to help students access help from the NHS and other external providers. Most students who have mental health difficulties are able to manage them, with appropriate support, and succeed at College. Maintaining good attendance is key to success for everyone.

Most mental health issues do not present a safeguarding risk. However, there are times when a student’s mental health issue might put them at risk. We need to know if your son or daughter is experiencing suicidal thoughts or harming him or herself. We will work with you to help keep them safe. It will usually be in their interests to attend College normally but sometimes a student may need some time away from College and/or a change to their programme, to keep them safe and help them succeed.

Other sources of help and information

Local Support:

YES Youth Enquiry Service 01206 710771 https://www.yesyouthenquiryservice.org/

Colchester: 9 Trinity Street, Colchester, Essex, CO1 1JN

Tendring: Hurlingham Chambers, 61 Station Road, Clacton-on-Sea, CO15 1SD

Offers help and support to young people for:

  • Benefits and Debts
  • Counselling – Individual and Family
  • Housing and Homelessness
  • Pregnancy and Support
  • Young Parents

On-line concerns

The internet and social media play a huge role in young people’s lives, and can present a range of risks. Our students will have received lessons in on-line safety throughout their time at school and we offer continuing education in this area via Tutorial. On-line activity conducted outside College can have an impact in College, and you should let us know if any of these issues arise:

  • Bullying or harassment on social media
  • Making or sharing of inappropriate sexual images
  • Viewing damaging material (for example sites/posts which promote anorexia or self-harm)
  • Any attempt to groom/exploit/radicalise a young person (see College Prevent strategy)

Other sources of help and information

Child Protection

This term refers to protection from physical, sexual, emotional abuse and neglect. Young people can be affected by violence in the home, even if it is not directed at them, and by issues such as addiction in the family. Please tell us if a student is suffering difficult conditions at home, so that we can support them.

Other sources of help and information

Emerging risks to older teenagers

Alcohol and drug use

We have a zero tolerance of alcohol and illegal drugs on College premises. Any student found in possession or under the influence will be permanently excluded.

However, we will work with students who wish to stop abusing drugs or alcohol. Parents should be aware of so-called “legal highs”, substances which may have another, legitimate purpose but which can be abused. Even occasional use of “recreational” drugs can be very dangerous: drugs can be stronger than anticipated and the buying of illegal drugs exposes young people to criminals and criminality. We educate our students in these matters via Tutorial.

Other sources of help and information

Financial exploitation

There has been a lot of publicity both locally and nationally, about “County Lines” drugs gangs, which recruit and exploit young people to transport and sell drugs. Young people are now being targeted as “money mules”, to launder money for organised crime gangs. This is often done on-line, via social media, with the gang member offering a reward to the young person for receiving money into their account.

Other sources of help and information

Pastoral Care and Support for students

Pastoral care is central to the ethos of the College. Most of our teachers, managers and senior managers at College have a pastoral role. Pastoral care is integrated into everything we do.

You will be supported by a Personal Tutor in a particular tutor group. Under normal circumstances, you will meet with your Personal Tutor each day. If you have any queries or problems about your course or any other aspect of College life, the first person to consult is normally your Personal Tutor. S/he will also review your progress regularly with you, based on assessments received from your subject tutors, and will guide you on course choices for Year 2, Higher Education and progression matters. Your Personal Tutor will put you in touch with more specialist advice if it is needed.

You are also supported by a Senior Tutor. You may need to see your Senior Tutor about such matters as a change of course, applications for jobs or Higher Education or other significant issues. You may be referred to your Senior Tutor for advice and guidance by your Personal Tutor. You can make an appointment to see your Senior Tutor via our Senior Tutor Support Staff. Their office is on the third floor (Room 337). Make sure that you know the name of your specific Senior Tutor and the location of his/her office. Each tutor group has a number and the first digit indicates your Division, e.g. Tutor group 209 is in Division 2.


Senior Tutor



Division 1

Adrian Frost

001 Main Building

Ground Floor

Division 2

Andrew Hathaway

602 Mid Site Building

Ground Floor

Division 3

Mark Griffin-Sherwood

322 South Site

3rd Floor

Division 4

Graham Rayner

642 Mid Site Building

3rd Floor

Division 5

Sarah Prince

220 Main Building

2nd Floor

Division 6

Sarah Palmer

655 Mid Site Building

4th Floor

Division 7

Jo Lawrence

611 Mid Site Building

2nd Floor

Division 8

Anne Johnson

319 Main Building

3rd Floor

Division 9

Emily Cheffins

602 Mid Site Building

Ground Floor

If you have a problem relating to a course, remember you can talk to your subject tutor, your Personal Tutor or your Senior Tutor, the relevant Head of Department or the Assistant Principal in charge of pastoral support (Jo Cadman).


Your Wellbeing

The Welfare Hub, room 124, provides a variety of support services to help with health, welfare and well-being. You can drop in to access services or ask for information; you can also request appointments for one to one help from the Welfare Coordinator or one of the Welfare Assistants. email: welfare@colchsfc.ac.uk

We can help you to get support from outside agencies when that is appropriate.

We have a counselling service, which you can access via your Senior Tutor or Jo Cadman or via email: counsellor@colchsfc.ac.uk.

Our Chaplain also offers help and advice to students of all faiths and none, on a wide range of matters: chaplain@colchsfc.ac.uk

The College also hosts a Mental Health Support Team, employed by Mind, called the WARMS team, who provide programmes of one to one support and groups to provide early intervention for issues such as anxiety and low mood. Referral is via the Welfare Hub.

Child Protection and Safeguarding

The College has a legal duty of care. This duty includes ensuring that students have a safe environment and highlights a need to be aware of any possible ‘child abuse’ and take action to keep all our students safe. A child in this context is defined as any young person under the age of eighteen but we treat all our students equally, including our 18 and 19 year old students. “Safeguarding” involves not just protecting students from harm but also promoting wellbeing, giving students the ability to keep themselves safe as they reach adulthood.

Please share any safeguarding concerns you may have, to help yourself, a friend or another student if you are worried about them. You should talk to your Personal Tutor, Senior Tutor or to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, Jo Cadman room 126C. (See also the main Safeguarding page of this website.)

Your Health

Health and Safety

Health and Safety is very important. Everyone should help to establish and maintain a safe environment, like all users of the College, students are expected to take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of others. You are asked to bring any hazard to the attention of staff. College safety rules and procedures should be observed at all times, including procedures established for specialist activities e.g. Sport, Science, and staff instructions must be followed at all times. You must not wilfully misuse, neglect or interfere with any item provided for safety. If you have an accident or a near miss in College, no matter how trivial and even if it was your fault, please see any member of staff who will help you complete an Accident Form so that the College can monitor accidents and investigate causes.

The College Health and Safety policy is issued to all members of staff and is available from Graham Rayner (Assistant Principal) or Helen O'Halloran (Health and Safety Officer), both of whom have roles to support students on Health and Safety matters. Students who are not willing to co-operate with Health and Safety requirements established by staff will be immediately excluded from activities.

Fire and Emergency Procedures: In the event of a fire or any other emergency, an alarm will sound and you should leave the building immediately, using the nearest exit. Evacuation practices will take place periodically. Evacuation notices with maps of fire assembly points are displayed in every room in College. Please ensure that you have read these carefully in each room you regularly use.

First Aid: If you require first aid, go straight to Reception, and a first aider will be called for you. The College's medical room is located at Reception.

Medical needsIf you have a health condition which you have not already disclosed to us on application or at interview or on your risk assessment, be sure to let your Personal Tutor know, and we will make a medical care plan with you if necessary.

Other health issues: staff in the Welfare Hub (room 124, email: welfare@colchsfc.ac.uk) can help you if you have a health query.

Promoting good health: There are healthy food options in the College refectories; water is available from water fountains around College and there is a broad range of facilities and activities to increase physical fitness.

Financial Support

Parents can continue to claim Child Benefit whilst students attend the College. If they have not already done so they can contact HMRC to report that you are continuing your studies by going to: https://www.gov.uk/child-benefit

Child Benefit Helpline    0300 200 3100

                                       8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday, 8am to 4pm Saturday.

                 Text phone    0300 200 3103

                 Outside UK   +44 2890 538 192

The College administers the Government Bursary Scheme for vulnerable students and will also award discretionary bursaries to eligible students. Details are distributed at enrolment. In addition, students should contact their Senior Tutor in case of financial hardship for help with College-related expenses.

Learning Support

Full details of the support offered can be found in the Learning Support document. If you believe you should have examination access arrangements and have not already discussed these needs, please speak to your Personal Tutor or email: learningsupport@colchsfc.ac.uk

Ensuring that the College is a fair and safe place

The College is committed to creating a teaching and learning environment that is free of harassment and which protects the dignity of all students, staff and visitors. We will respect each other and value the differences between us. The College will not necessarily treat everyone the same but instead we will meet people’s needs in different ways to ensure fair outcomes for everyone. We all take responsibility for making sure that students, staff and visitors are protected from harm, including bullying and discrimination. Students and staff all contribute to making the College an enjoyable, inclusive and personalised learning environment.

We will treat students and staff fairly and solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential. The College values diversity in respect of race, ethnicity or national origin, gender, religion and belief or none, socio-economic background, gender variance, marital status or family circumstances, political opinions and affiliations, physical attributes or appearance, disability, sexual orientation, age, pregnancy and parenthood. The College is a diverse, international and multicultural community. We are developing a teaching and learning environment in which each and every member has an equal opportunity to participate. Supported by the public sector equality duty of the Equality Act (2010), the College is working to eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations.

Protection from bullying, victimisation and harassment

The College is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for all members of the College. We do not tolerate bullying, victimisation and harassment, including hate speech. The College has a Protection from Harassment and Bullying Policy. Our Protection from Harassment and Bullying Policy can be found on the College website.

Student Representation and Feedback

In order to ensure that we remain a very successful College it is important that you have the opportunity to provide feedback on all aspects of College life.

We hope that you feel sufficiently confident to inform us of your feelings about, and experiences of, College. You have a number of ways in which your views can be heard:

  • through a Tutor Group representative on the College Council
  • through direct access to your Subject Tutors, Personal Tutor and to Senior Staff to discuss issues of concern
  • through the College Governors either directly or through elected Student, Staff or Parent Governors
  • through the annual student questionnaires and department surveys

The College is very keen that students have the opportunity to play a full part in determining how the College is run. Students have their own organisation, the College Council, to represent student views and ensure that students’ needs are met. You have the right to vote in the elections for the College Council Executive Committee roles: Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Treasurer, Secretary, Public Relations Officer, Social, Arts, Sports, Culture, Environment and Charities Committee Chairpersons. You are represented by your Tutor Group representative on the College Council, which holds the Executive to account and meets about five times each academic year. To keep you informed of its work, an agenda is published at least one week prior to the meeting and copies of the minutes from that meeting are circulated to Tutor Group reps. The Chairperson of the College Council joins the Governing Body of the College as a member and is supported by the Vice-Chairperson who is an observer. Members of the Executive also sit on other committees such as the Culture Committee and Library Committee to ensure that your views are being properly aired. They report back regularly to College Council meetings and answer any of your questions. If you have any queries about the role of Tutor Group representatives, the College Council, the College Council Executive, or any Committees, then please refer to the College Council Constitution, or its Code of Practice, or see the Head of Student Services, Chris Throup, in the Geography department.