The Cluster
Supporting our most vulnerable children and families

The Brigshaw Cluster Team work with our local schools and partners to provide a comprehensive package of targeted and universal support for local children, young people and families experiencing social, emotional and/ or behavioural difficulties.

Our aim is to identify those families, children and young people most in need of help and to ensure they are offered the right intervention at the right time, by the right people as early as possible in the life of a problem.

Brigshaw Cluster has established working partnerships with a range of services, including, Children's Social Work Services, health services, police, youth services, housing, intensive family support services and the voluntary sector. The Cluster Guidance and Support Team provide EarlyHelp and targeted support to children, young people and families across the seven schools in the Brigshaw Learning partnership and our two partner schools; Great Preston Primary and Lady Elizabeth Hastings Primary in Ledston.

The team, which is based at Brigshaw High School, offer support services, including:

  • 1:1 short-term counselling for children and young people covering issues such as; anxiety, low mood, self-harming behaviours, bereavement, anger and relationship difficulties.
  • 1:1 early intervention support family support for parents and carers
  • Delivery of evidence-based parenting groups,
  • Attendance improvement,
  • Targeted interventions,
  • SEMH support (Social Emotional, and Mental Health) and safeguarding.
  • Advice, guidance and consultation for schools and partners
  • Strategic links to Leeds City Council, NHS and the third sector

Requests for support from our Cluster schools and partners are discussed and allocated services at our monthly Guidance and Support meetings.

Please speak to your child's school or your GP in the first instance if you have any support needs of your own that you would like to discuss.

Here are some examples of the feedback received after working with us:

"Family support has given me a good insight into how my child's brain works and her behaviour which has helped me change my response to her."
"I know this will be a long-term process but my child's behaviour has improved so much already; the support has been amazing. I have even been sharing the strategies with my friends."
"I got to talk about how I was feeling and get my tears out. I loved doing the session on Thursdays, I will miss coming."
"Just being able to talk about things going on and to get outside advice for them."

Meet the team

Adele joined Brigshaw in 2008 managing the ‘Targeted Mental Health in Schools’ programme and has held various positions in BLP since then. She is now Director of Safeguarding and Targeted Services Leader. Her previous career was as a Registered Nurse for people with Learning Disabilities andMental Health. She studied at Charles Frears College of Nursing in Leicester before moving to London to manage various Nursing Homes. Adele is passionate about safeguarding children and young people and will be leading on safeguarding compliance across the BLP.

Adele Dempster

Jeanette joined Brigshaw Cluster in September 2020.Jeanette has worked in two previous Clusters as a school therapist, as a manager at Families Forward (child contact centre), Place2Be, Relate, CLICSargent and Well Women’s Centre. Jeanette studied at Joseph Priestley College between 2004 to 2006, where she achieved her Diploma in Counselling. Jeanette became a counsellor as she is passionate about trying to make a difference to children’s lives.  

Jeanette Lowley

Sarah joined BLP in June 2022 from her previous role as a school project manager of a counselling service in another Leeds high school. She studied at Hull University for a degree in integrative counselling solutions and gained a masters at Leeds Trinity in children and young people mental health. Sarah is a registered member of the BACP ethical governing body.

Sarah McNally

Leaving school Maria trained as a hairdresser, however, soon realised she had not achieved her educational potential, picked up her books and graduated as a mature student from University of Leeds with a degree in Child Welfare and Combined Social Studies and later graduated from Leeds Metropolitan University with a master degree in Childhood Studies. In 2006 she joined Brigshaw High School as a Learning Manager and has progressed to Cluster Manager. Maria has a passion for equal opportunities in education and supporting children, young people and families to overcome any barriers to reaching their full potential.   

Maria Milner

Debbiejoined Brigshaw High school in March 2023 after working at  AllertonBywater Primary School for 30 years as a Pupil Welfare Manager. She is nowworking as the Family Practitioner with the Cluster Team.  Debbie will beleading on building and improving relationships with children, young people andfamilies throughout the cluster.

Debbie studied at Thomas Danby College and started her career as a NurseryNurse at Shakespeare Primary for 10 years.

Debbiehas always had a passion for working with families within the community and isexcited to be focusing on her new role.  

Debbie Oldroyd