Additional support for every child who needs it

Every child is different. At Brannel School we recognise that, for some children, school is not always an easy experience. Children occasionally face social and emotional challenges which can impact on their learning. Our Pastoral Team, managed by Neil Richards, Assistant Headteacher, are available to all of our students who need them. Some of the ways the Pastoral Team can support students are:

  • 1-1 mentoring
  • Attendance support
  • Behaviour management
  • Social and emotional support
  • Referrals to our School Counsellor
  • Emotional first aid/mental health support
  • Understanding self-harm
  • Support with relationships/friendships
  • Referrals to specialist agencies
  • Support through periods of bereavement

If there is anything that you feel your child may be struggling with, either in school or as a result of something at home, please do not hesitate to contact one of the Pastoral Team on 01728 822485 to discuss it further and see how they can support you.


Neil Richards – Designated Safeguarding Lead

In addition to my duties as Assistant Headteacher and leading Brannel’s Pastoral Team, my role as the school’s Designated Safeguarding Lead involves making sure all staff are aware how to raise safeguarding concerns, ensuring all staff understand the symptoms of child abuse and neglect, referring any concerns to social care, monitoring children who are the subject of child protection plans and maintaining accurate and secure child protection records.



Caroline Hunt – Student Welfare officer

I have worked at Brannel for over 5 years as the Student Welfare Officer.  I joined the school with 20 years’ experience as a police staff member in the police service, during which time I was responsible for helping and supporting people get through difficult times in their life.  I am trained in supporting young people who may be struggling with their mental health, self-harm, bereavement, low self-esteem and confidence.  I am also responsible for overseeing whole school attendance. I recognise the difficulties families and young people face in today’s society and thrive on trying to help them by using my knowledge and experience of what support is available for families and young people in Cornwall.


Liz Dando – Pastoral Officer

I was a teacher in a Cornish School and then a consultant for 10 years supporting teaching and learning, E-safety and ICT and trained as an Ofsted Inspector. I retrained as a counsellor and spent 10 years in the charity sector working as a high risk Domestic Violence Adviser, Rape Crisis Worker. I also worked as an Advanced Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Practitioner, supporting families and young people. At Brannel, I provide one to one support and interventions for pupils who need information, support and guidance to help them rebuild their self-esteem and fully engage in their education.


Jordan Nash – Pastoral Officer

I have worked at Brannel School for 5 years.  I was for a short time a care assistant in the ARB but spent the last 4 years as the Inclusion Mentor in the Inclusion Unit. I have enjoyed my time in the Inclusion Unit, getting to know students, helping and supporting them to overcome difficulties. I have 10 years of experience working with young people through an alternative organisation, providing young people with opportunities to learn new skills and make other friendship groups outside of school.


Abi Hearn – School Counsellor

I am a registered member of the BACP (British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists). I qualified as a person-centred counsellor in 2012 from Plymouth University, volunteering and completing my training hours with CRASAC (Cornwall Rape and Sexual Abuse Centre). Following this I moved to Poltair and then Brannel School to set up student counselling and peer mentor services. I also offer mindfulness training to students. More recently, through the charity CLEAR, I completed a post qualifying diploma in working therapeutically with children and young people who have been abused.