The wellbeing of students is key, and the fact that the student voice is heard is vital to guarantee the students are happy and ready to learn. I am responsible for ensuring that there are appropriate policies and guidance in situ and all staff have sufficient support, training and guidance for their roles. I am also responsible for ensuring that PHSE is delivered to all students. As a member of the Senior Leadership Team, my role is to help the students and staff feel safe whilst at school.
My main role as DSL is to enable staff and students to report concerns and that these are acted on and monitored accurately and appropriately, that all staff training is in place, and all Government guidance and legislation is adhered to. I lead on Governor and Local Authority safeguarding audits and ensure all relevant data is submitted each term.
I love that I get to work in lovely grounds with children who would not receive an appropriate education if they were in mainstream school. The students feel empowered, confident, and can speak out about their concerns. Every day is different, and the ethos here is always child centred.
My happiest moment at school was when students began to seek me out to speak to as a trusted adult, and in particular one student who was struggling to return. They chose to seek me out each week, despite having not known me for long, and when one student told another student (in front of me) that ‘if you have any concerns speak to Julie’. It’s those moments I always remember. It makes me happy knowing we make a difference here.
My professional experience is rich and varied. I am a qualified nurse (RNMH) and have a Diploma in Teaching in the Lifelong Learning Sector, and have over 30 years’ experience working with children, young people and adults with learning disabilities, learning difficulties, ADHD/ADD, ASD and mental health conditions, and I have spent over 20 years at Senior Management level. In my most recent role I was the Vice Principal Care & Safeguarding at an Independent SEMH Residential school.
In my spare time outside school I enjoy going to the gym (but I only to attend classes as I need to be strongly encouraged to do anything!), walking my dogs (but not in the rain), spending time with my friends and family, listening to music and going concerts, going out for meals. I am also trying to learn Spanish.