Student Support & SEND

Pastoral Support

The well being of all our students is paramount to us.

We place great emphasis on developing and maintaining positive relationships between students, staff and parents/carers. This shared commitment will facilitate maximum academic progress, excellent behaviour, respect for learning and involvement in a wide range of challenging, stimulating and worthwhile activities.

All students are placed in mixed ability Tutor groups under the watchful eye and guidance of their Tutor.


Tutors are key members of staff for students and their parent/carers. At Didsbury High School it is the intention for Tutors to be assigned to their Tutor groups for five years. In doing so they become fully aware of the students’ individual needs, personalities, strengths and possible areas for support. Parents/carers will also know that they are speaking to an informed member of staff who has already built up a bond of trust with their child.

Head of Year 

Heads of Year are able to support students and parent/carers daily with all manner of pastoral issues. They are usually the first point of contact for parent/carers and other members of staff. Heads of Year are able to support with social, emotional, behavioural and academic issues and are key in any early help offered. 

Head of House

Our House team work with students on prioritising academic progress and supporting the student to access other help if needed to remove any barriers to progress.

Young Carer Award

DHS working towards Young Carers Award this summer.

Here at Didsbury we are currently working towards our Bronze Award for supporting Young carers in school, to make sure that students don’t miss out on an education because they have a caring role at home.

We sent a letter out last term hoping to identify our young carers and received a great response. We continue to work in school and with external agencies to ensure our young carers are receiving the support they need.


The Young Carers in Schools programme helps primary and secondary schools improve outcomes for young carers and celebrates good practice through the Young Carers in Schools Award.

Young carers are responsible for emotional, practical or physical care for a parent, sibling or other family member who has a physical disability, mental health issue or substance misuse issue. The 2011 Census statistics revealed that there are just over 166,000 young carers in England, but research reveals that this is just the tip of the iceberg. The true figure could be closer to 800,000 young carers in England, equivalent to one in five secondary aged school children.


Research carried out by Carers Trust and The Children’s Society shows that, on average, young carers miss or cut short 48 school days a year and often have lower levels of self-confidence, mental wellbeing and significantly lower educational attainment at GCSE level, because of their caring role.


To achieve our Bronze Award DHS are working to demonstrate that it supports young carers in many ways, including PP&R clubs and drop-in sessions with a member of staff who is responsible for this vulnerable group of pupils. We are excited to set up termly events where young carers can come and receive support from each other whilst having some rest bite from their responsibilities at home. Important information about how to identify young carers is made available to all school staff, and noticeboards and the school webpage let students and their families know where to go for help. We are currently working closely with Guddum Shine – Manchester’s young carers project and M-Thrive to ensure that our students are provided with the support they need.


Helen Leadbitter, national young carers lead at The Children’s Society, said: “Hundreds of schools across England are participating in the Young Carers in Schools programme, using the tools and resources to improve their support systems, and ensuring that no child need miss out on educational opportunities because they are a carer. 74% of schools who have achieved a Young Carers in Schools Award have noticed improved attendance among their young carers, and 94% have noticed improvements in their wellbeing and confidence.

SEND at Didsbury High School

SENDCo: Mark Sackville-Ford

Please email [email protected] with enquiries.

We believe that every student, regardless of background or circumstance, should be given an equal opportunity to become the best that they can possibly be. We are committed to ensuring that all students have full entitlement and access to rich and diverse learning opportunities, which will open the doors to the future of their choice. 


We work closely with students, parents/carers, teachers and outside agencies to:


  • Create an environment in which students with SEND can fulfil their potential
  • Enable students with SEND to function as independently as possible within the school environment and the outside world
  • Create a partnership in which the school, home and other agencies work together for the benefit of students with SEND
  • Ensure that the needs of our students are well identified and understood