Thornbeck College

Thornbeck College is an Independent Specialist College providing personalised programmes to autistic and neurodivergent individuals

Working together to inspire, support, celebrate and equip autistic and neurodivergent people to fulfil their potential in life.

In September Thornbeck College participated in health and safety month whereby they participated in a range of activities and experiential visits covering a range of health and safety topics including:

Learner Induction

Following completion of a range of work-based and practical activities, learners have increased their knowledge and understanding in relation to:

  • Stating who can help them at college
  • Identifying their key tutor and what they do
  • Recognising the college Designated Safeguarding Leads
  • Following the fire procedure to evacuate the college building safely during a fire drill and locate the nearest assembly point
  • Identifying and follow college rules
  • Identifying a range of health and safety signs and their meaning
  • Following college procedures to make a complaint 

First Aid

Learners attended a First Aid workshop delivered by a member of the North East Autism Society's Training and Development Team. Learners participated in a range of activities including: applying a plaster and a bandage, using an EpiPen, supporting someone into the recovery position and completing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). 

PSCO Visit

A local PSCO visit college to deliver a workshop to learners. The workshop was an opportunity for the PSCO to discuss her role in the police force,  support she can offer and what typical day in her role would consist of. Learners prepared a range of questions to ask to gain further information 

Role- play scenarios to make an emergency services phone call

A range of scenarios were provided to leaners along with a script containing instruction to make an emergency 999. Learners practiced making calls to a range of services and experienced answering direct questions in relation to specific causes of concern

Water Safety

During a swimming session, learners developed their knowledge in relation to keeping themselves safe in water. They practiced floating on top of the water like a starfish following the RNLI guidance on water safety. Learners also practiced used lifesaving equipment to demonstrate how an individual could be rescued safely when experiencing difficulty in water.

Fire Service Workshop

The local fire service and fire engine visited the college site as part of a fire safety workshop. The learners developed their understanding regarding the role of the firefighter, how to keep their homes and the college  environment safe, the importance of having and testing smoke alarms in the home, how to stop, drop and roll in the event of clothing catching fire and how to make a 999 call and ask for the fire brigade. The learners participated in a tour of the fire engine and learnt about the range of tools and equipment that the fire fighters use in emergencies.


Electrical Safety

Learners were provided with a safe and sabotaged electrical equipment in the college environment. They were supported to identify the broken items and the appropriate procedure to follow. They followed instructions to identify the purpose of PAT testing and check electrical items they use in college had been PAT testing accordingly.  Some learners participated in research to support them to understand the importance of using legitimate phone chargers and the potential risks of using cheaper alternatives.


Participating in the above activities as part of health and safety month provide opportunities for learners to develop their knowledge and understanding to keep themselves safe in a range of environments. Working with  local emergency services supported the promotion of community inclusion.

Police Dogs

Learners attended a workshop with a dog handler from Durham Police, and police safety dogs Ben and Jet. Learners developed their knowledge in relation to the role the dogs play in supporting police officers, and in turn keeping the community safe.

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