During these times of uncertainty there will be some people who are worried about what is going to happen, how their work will be affected in school and find it hard to be away from friends and trusted teachers and school staff.
We know that being restricted in your movements can be frustrating, but we would like to assure you that there is a contact at school if you have a safeguarding concern. This is to be used if you are a student who is having a hard time, feeling low or feel like you are in danger and do not have another trusted adult to help. You can email the address below and we can help you. This can also be used by family members and members of the public who become concerned about the safety of a student who attends COLAI during the period of closure beginning Friday 20th March 2020.
How to report a safeguarding concern:
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and include the name of the student and their year group if this is known, or any other information you may have to help identify them.
If you are a student, please leave your full name, year group and house so we can help.
Please note that we cannot respond to concerns that are missing information with which we can identify students so any information you have would be useful for us.
Please do not use this method of communication if the safeguarding concern is urgent and you know the student is experiencing harm or is likely to. Please use the Children’s Services number below or dial 999.
Islington Children’s Services - 020 7527 7400
Hackney Children’s Services – 020 8356 5500
Support for Children and Young People
There are several other services that can offer support to children and young people who are struggling, and these are listed below:
Childline – 0800 1111. This service is anonymous and is form young people. There is also a counselling message service you can access through the website on a computer or on a mobile device.
You can also find online support on www.nspcc.org.uk
Barnardos offer a range of support for young people, including LGBTQ+ community, those in care or leaving care and more general concerns. https://www.barnardos.org.uk
Winston’s Wish at https://www.winstonswish.org/ is a service for children who are going through bereavement. They also offer support for families to help their children.
Child Bereavement UK at https://www.childbereavementuk.org/ is another service to support children and young people who have lost loved ones. They have a helpline for families to offer support.
On occasions, young people experience bullying, either directly face to face, or via electronic communication and social media. The following website provides wider additional advice for both parents and students in relation to dealing with bullying which may be a useful reference for when students are at home.
While students are away from school and if they experience bullying on social media or in the community and it is serious, please report this to the Police using 101. You can also find guidance using the link above.
The internet has many positive benefits for young people, including helping them to develop their education, but it also has a darker side. It is essential that students are taught to keep themselves safe whilst online and they must be alert to potential dangers. The following websites offer both students and parents useful guidance and advice for staying safe online.
Top Ten Digital Safety Tips
Support for families
There is extensive support for families in Islington that you can access through the family directory website. This offers support and assistance for a whole range of concerns or support, including family breakdown, alcohol and drug support and counselling.
This can be accessed at https://directory.islington.gov.uk/
You can also seek family support from the Early Help team at the local authority. Call 0207 527 7400 and select option 2 for CAMHS or listen for other options.
There are some specific support for parents which is available at https://www.islington.gov.uk/children-and-families/parenting-and-family-support.
Free Meals and Food in Islington
Mental Health Support
When we go through challenging times such as this, it is important to understand how to keep ourselves mentally healthy. There are many organisations that can help and some are listed below:
Young Minds at https://youngminds.org.uk/. A charity that provides support to young people who are experiencing mental health issues. The website contains a lot of information and advice on how to get help.
Mental Health Foundation at https://mentalhealth.org.uk/
Mind at https://www.mind.org.uk/
Kooth at www.Kooth.com. This is an online counselling service for young people.
The Samaritans at www.samaritans.org or call free on 116 123 (24 hour service). This is a helpline service for people who are feeling desperate and need someone to listen to them.
Switchboard at https://switchboard.lgbt/. Switchboard provides an information, support and referral service for lesbians, gay men and bisexual and trans people – and anyone considering issues around their sexuality and/or gender identity. You can also call 0300 330 0630 (from 10am to 10pm) and they have an instant message or email service too.
Calm Harm at https://calmharm.co.uk/. This is an app that can be downloaded and is designed to help people resist or manage the urge to self-harm. It's private and password protected.
Headspace. This is a mindfulness app. Mindfulness is a form of meditation that can be used to prevent or manage stress, anxiety and depression. It encourages you to focus on what is happening in that moment.
There are things you can do at home to help keep yourself mentally healthy. There are some tips below:
Use the NHS Mind Plan website at https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/your-mind-plan-quiz/ which will give you ideas on how to keep mentally healthy. The rest of the website has good information on difficulties you may experience too.
There are lots of good ideas on how you can keep mentally healthy on the CAMHS for Children website at https://camhs.cnwl.nhs.uk/children/mental-health-tips/
It is important to look after your physical health as well as your mental health. There are a wide range of home-based exercises that families can do at home and these are available for you to search on YouTube. Each morning at 9am starting on Monday 23rd March, Joe Wicks, the Body Coach is doing on online ‘at home PE lesson’ for students who are not in school. You can find this on his YouTube channel and there are more details on his website at https://www.thebodycoach.com/blog/pe-with-joe-1254.html.
There is some advice on the BBC on how to keep fit at home at https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51933762