At Blessed Thomas Holford, looking after every child is central to all that we do, and we believe that our Catholic ethos helps to create a caring environment in which each and every member of our school family is cherished and supported.
We support pupils even before they start on their Blessed Thomas Holford journey and recognise that the transition from primary to secondary school is really important. As a reflection of our commitment to ensuring that every child’s needs, talents and personalities are recognised, we have two non-teaching Heads of Year 7 who begin the hard work of gathering information as soon as your child is offered a place at our school. They are available to all parents to answer queries and deal with any concerns both prior to pupils’ transition and throughout their first year here.
In Year 8, your child will be placed in one of six houses named after influential Catholic figures. They will stay in this house until the end of Year 10. These smaller house groups help to retain the sense of smaller families within our wider school family, and ensure that the comprehensive care shown in Year 7 can continue with a Head of House who knows their cohort of pupils well.
The houses are as follows:
During their crucial GCSE year, pupils in Year 11 are once more supported as a year group, with a Head of Year and two Assistant Heads of Year. Again, this structure helps to ensure that all pupils are well known and can receive the best possible care. This is so important as our pupils enter their final year of main school.
We have an experienced Pupil Services team to help pupils with any day-to-day issues, along with our Attendance Officer and EWO, who have lots of contact with pupils to support with any issues affecting their attendance and wellbeing. We offer interventions to help with pupils’ wide-ranging needs, ensuring consistent provision for those who are struggling in any way. This includes liaising with outside agencies to make sure that we are providing the most comprehensive pastoral care possible.
Our pastoral team is always available to help with any issues, no matter how small. We want every pupil to feel known and important, as well as being happy and confident in their learning.
There are lots of services available to help and support parents, pupils and families with mental health and general wellbeing.
All Services Available within Trafford
Trafford Family Information Service - A comprehensive directory of all of the mental health services available within Trafford
Trafford Virtual Mental Wealth Hub - A single point of access to Mental Health Services available to children and young people in Trafford
Coronavirus Support within Trafford – Advice and information to support you through the current pandemic
Information and Guidance for Children and Young People
Below are some websites which you may find useful if you’re struggling with your mental health. Please reach out to a member of staff or grown up you trust. We are still here for you.
Childline - Information and advice on a range of issues for children and young people, such as abuse, bullying, body image, feelings, friendships/relationships, home/families and school/college/work.
Childnet – if you are suffering from cyberbullying, please tell a grown up that you trust. You can also find help through Childnet https://www.childnet.com/search-results/?keywords=cyberbullying
NSPCC – Support and advice for those living with domestic abuse, physical, emotional or sexual abuse or neglect. https://www.nspcc.org.uk/
Kooth – Free, safe and anonymous online/text support for anybody struggling with feeling lonely, anxious, depressed, suicidal, worried or stressed.
Shout - Free, safe and anonymous online/text support for anybody struggling with feeling lonely, anxious, depressed, suicidal, worried or stressed.
Talkshop - Support with anything causing children and young people worries
Young Minds – Anonymous and confidential online mental health support. If you feel you are at crisis point, then get in touch with someone through https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/get-urgent-help/
Place2Be – Providing early mental health support for children and young people https://www.place2be.org.uk/
Trafford Young Carers – if you are under 18 and care for someone with a physical disability or mental health condition or drug/alcohol problem, you can get help https://www.traffordcarerscentre.org.uk/
Disordered Eating – Support for those struggling with their relationship with food
Equality and Diversity
Equality and Diversity
If you are struggling with identity issues or want to reach out to other like-minded young people please refer to the links below or contact Mrs Penny-Collings who is the coordinator of ‘We are Family’ which is a group which aims to improve equality and diversity awareness in our school community
Just Like Us (LGBT+) - support for young LGBT+ people
Kids of Colour (BAME) – A platform for young people of colour to explore race, identity and culture and challenge the everyday, institutionalised racism that shapes their lives.
Connexions - Advice, information and guidance about how to access work/training, job vacancies and CV writing.
You can also get in touch with our Careers Advisor Mrs Charman email@example.com
QDOS Careers – information on education pathways and career choices and career options, together with tools, career advice and preparation for employment and university. https://qdoscareersapp.co.uk/
If you feel you need more help even after looking into the services from the previous section and doing all that you can to help with your mental health, you may want to consider looking into the following services.
Trafford School Nurses - Talk to a member of the pastoral team at school to talk about a referral to the school nurse.
42nd Street - Free, confidential counselling and psychosocial support for children and young people with mental health and wellbeing difficulties.
Coaching Inside and Out (13+) - Life coaches to work with you on anything causing you a problem, for example anxiety, relationships, returning to school, anger etc.
MU Foundation - Inspiring young people to build a better life for themselves and unite the communities in which you live.
Early Break Trafford - 1:1 person-centred support for a range of difficulties including substance misuse, physical health, emotional health, sexual health, family, education, finance, employment etc. Whole family support where there is an issue with a parent/carer who has a substance use issue.
Young Minds - Parents/carers and children can find helpful guidance and support about young people’s mental health and CAMHS.
Information and Guidance for Parents/Carers/Families
If as a parent or carer, you feel you need some mental health support for yourself or someone in your family, please explore the links below.
Trafford Sunrise Parenting Workshops (via Just Psychology) – workshops addressing common mental health difficulties including anxiety, low mood, behaviour difficulties, parental separation and bullying.
Children in Need (CIN - Looked After Children and Previously Looked After Children) – Any issues surrounding CIN, please contact Virtual School. You can also speak to Mrs Tarry (Director of Pastoral Care and Guidance) or Ms Ward (Head of Pastoral Care and Guidance).
Special Educational Needs or Disability (SEND) – Information and guidance for parents and carers of children with SEND is available through the following services in Trafford or by contacting Mr Crampton (SENCO) or Mrs Robinson (Assistant SENCO).
- Special Educational Needs Advisory Service (SENAS)
- Trafford Educational Psychology Service https://www.trafforddirectory.co.uk/kb5/trafford/fsd/service.page?id=UMwq2kQxUqM
- Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support Services (SSENDIASS)
- Trafford Parents Forum Support for parents/carers of children and young people with SEND.
Home Start - Offering support and friendship for families who are struggling to cope with a wide range of situations, such as loneliness, mental ill-health, disabilities, multiple children and increasing poverty and debt. Support is provided to help prevent crisis and family breakdown. Volunteers are other parents that have also been in a difficult situation.
Adult IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies) - Talking therapies for adults experiencing difficulties with anxiety and depression-based presentations. You can self-refer for talking therapies such as cognitive behaviour therapy, counselling and guided self-help.
Trafford Parents Forum and STEP (Stronger Together Empowering Parents) - Support from volunteers who have or care for children and young people with SEND.
MindEd - Advice and information for parents/carers concerned about the mental health of their child.
Samaritans - The Samaritans offer free, confidential and judgement-free support for those in crisis.
If you have suffered the loss of a loved one, please find some help and support below.
Child Bereavement UK - Support for young people who are grieving or parents and families grieving the loss of a child.
Greater Manchester Bereavement Service - Supporting anyone in Greater Manchester that has suffered loss or been affected by a death.
Once Upon a Smile - Emotional and practical support for bereaved families.
Useful Apps and Resources
https://calmharm.co.uk/ helping to resist and manage the urge to self-harm
https://www.headspace.com/headspace-meditation-app reduce stress and anxiety and sleep better
https://www.prevent-suicide.org.uk/ helping you stay safe in crisis
https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/selfhelp.htm self help resources on a range of issues
If you or someone you know is at crisis point and are perhaps having thoughts about suicide or self-harm, please call 111 or go to A&E. If you feel you or someone you know is at immediate risk, call 999.