Early Help Offer (2022-2023)

At Thomas Gainsborough School, we recognise the importance of early help to offer support to meet the needs of students. 

Early Help is everybody’s responsibility: together we will make sure that children, young people and their families are safe, happy and ready for school, work and life’s challenges.

Early Help supports better outcomes for children and families. Effective Early Help aims to resolve problems before they become overwhelming and may require intervention from reactive services. Early Help can advocate children to be ready for school and more likely to achieve their full potential. Ofsted recognised that the Student Support within the school was outstanding, highlighting our forensic knowledge of our students.

Our school was awarded the Families First Award, which recognises the outstanding support we provide to families, and much of our early help offer is made in conjunction with support offered to families in our school community.

Early Help Intervention

Year Group/ Target Group

Summary of intervention

Learning Mentor


Learning Mentor to work  with students who have an identified need, whether that be social, emotional, behavioural or academic.

Form Tutor


All students have an allocated form tutor who they see on a daily basis. This is their first point of contact for any issues, and parents also have email access to their child’s tutor. In addition, there are scheduled Academic Review Day meetings, 3 times per year, but parents are encouraged to liaise more regularly as required. Tutors are responsible for overseeing the academic and pastoral wellbeing of their group, and liaising with other staff within the school as required to ensure that the appropriate support is in place as soon as a need is identified.

Head of House


All students have an allocated HoH who will work with students on prioritising academic progress, supporting the student to access other help if needed.

TGS Chaplains


The TGS Chaplains are available to talk to students about any issues they may have, whether related to faith or just general wellbeing. The Chaplains also facilitate an extra curricular activity to explore belief in a non ecclesiastical form.

Wellbeing Survey


Aim is to see patterns in student wellbeing to target interventions as required.

School Nursing Team


School nurses available on a drop-in or referral basis to see students with medical or wellbeing needs.

SES (Specialist Education Services)

Yr 7-11

Comprising the Cognition & Learning, Communication & Interaction, Sensory & Physical, Social, Emotional and Mental Health and Whole School Inclusion Services, the Specialist Education Services are part of Suffolk County Council.  This core service is enhanced by the purchase  of the traded service to provide an outreach provision for Suffolk mainstream schools seeking additional support for pupils with communication and interaction needs and/or social, emotional and mental health needs. (previously CISS -County Inclusion Support Service).

Personalised Timetable


Students who have specific needs, may be offered a bespoke timetable. Some students are offered a bespoke timetable to meet their particular needs, whether on a temporary or permanent basis, depending on need.

Access nurture provision


Access is a nurture provision which allows students who have a broad range of needs to be supported effectively in a small class provision to develop both academically and socially. This provision is personalised and a placement is to facilitate re intergration into mainstream learning.

Kooth Online Wellbeing Support


www.kooth.com is an online wellbeing service, run in partnership with the NHS and recognised by the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy). 

Porch Project

All Years

Porch offer personalised support for young people locally. Part of their offer is to meet individuals in Schools in addition to their youth work in the community.

Nicky’s Way

Years 8-11, students identified by learning mentors following a bereavement

Nicky's Way supports children and young people aged 5 to 18 who are bereaved due to any cause of death.

Number 72 Listening Service

Key students identified by learning mentors or other staff as having low self image and self esteem

Number 72 is an independent charity in Sudbury. The service comes into School one day a week to support students on a One to One basis.


Highest attaining students in years 10 and 11

Programme of sessions run by a variety of members of staff looking at developing study skills and motivation in the most able learners. The programme aims to equip the students with the skills to tackle learning at a higher level by providing transferable skills and looks at topics such as metacognition, exam question analysis, research skills, self regulation and essay writing.

Literacy and Numeracy Intervention

7 to 9

Targeting the students with the lowest literacy and numeracy attainment, students work to focus on reading confidence, comprehension, spelling, grammar, punctuation and basic maths skills. We also have Herts for Learning, personalised tutoring and Lexia.

Chromebook use All years Individual support for students to remove barriers to learning and to support evidence for normal way of working when considering access arrangements for exams.
Handwriting  Club KS3 & Y11 Targeted support for Key Stage 3 students and those in Year 11.

LSC Lunch Club


All Years


A quiet space within the Learning Support Centre where students can come to have their lunch away from main areas.

Suffolk Young Carer Support

All years

Working in partnership with Suffolk Young carers we offer regular meetings with Sherie, our schools’ worker. The school has been awarded the Young Carers Gold Award in recognition of our work with Young Carers.

Homework club

All years

Homework support Tuesday-Wednesday -Thursday in the LSC until 4pm. Staff are on hand to support with guidance and resources.

OM Wellbeing

Year 11, identified by Learning Mentors

Health & Wellbeing provision funded by the School.

External Agency Support

All years

We work closely with external agencies to access additional support where appropriate, for example, behaviour support, CAF/TAC, family support workers, social workers, Triple P Parenting programme, local police and PCSO, Diversion Programme and health professionals.

C-Card drop in.


Run by female youth worker, aimed at providing advice and resources for students who require information regarding relationships


All years

External referrals for group work, counselling and other activities. Ipswich based.

Wellbeing Drop-In

All years

Weekly wellbeing drop-in session, run by the school mental health first aiders. Available to any student who would like to discuss a wellbeing concern.

Careers Hub

All years

Specialist qualified careers practitioner available to discuss future career pathways, further or higher educational provision, work experience and employability skills. Bespoke advice and guidance on interview skills and employer/educational workshops targeting a wide variety of careers and labour market information.  Regular group work lessons for students on personalised timetables. Extensive in house support to ensure identified students progress successfully, this includes personalised visits to college’s, group activity sessions and one to one support pre and post Year 11. Careers Club - lunchtime space for students to sit quietly and work on their record of employment. Careers Practitioner has regular meetings with our allocated Young Person’s Worker at Health, Wellbeing and Children’s Services to support students at risk of becoming NEET (not in education, employment or training) in the future.

Suffolk Wellbeing Online Workshops Age 13+

Referrals can be made by children or families.

Dealing with Feeling Anxious is for those who are feeling anxious/worried and are perhaps avoiding things because of this. Dealing with Feeling Down is for those who are feeling down and have stopped enjoying things. AImed at helping young people understand their feelings and ways in which to deal with them. Both webinars are live and interactive for 1 hour, giving the opportunity to ask questions throughout.


Extra & Co-curricular activities All Years An extensive enrichment programme is offered to support students wellbeing and personal development. 

Independent Psychoanalyst Services

6th Form Provides a referral service to students.
Psychology in Schools Team All years https://www.nsft.nhs.uk/parent-workshops/