Supporting the Wellbeing of Students and Staff

The University is committed to the wellbeing of its students and staff.  Arrangements to ensure that individuals receive proper support have recently been refreshed and are set out below.

Students

1. Students can face a number of challenges and difficulties while they are at University, and this can sometimes lead to concerns about their wellbeing. Indicators of personal difficulty and distress vary greatly, and some examples are set out in paragraph 7 below. 

2. If you are concerned about a student’s wellbeing or behaviour, you should contact your Head of School or Faculty Education Service Manager who will assist in the referral of the student to more specialist support services (such as the Student Mental Health and Wellbeing Service).  If your concern is about a student in University-owned or managed accommodation, you should contact the residence warden or the University’s Accommodation Manager.  In some cases it may be helpful to review the student’s situation;  relevant expertise from around the University will be brought together in a Student Support Case Conference to identify the best way to support the individual.

3. Case conferences are generally chaired by the Head of Student Support, and includes representatives of the student support services and the relevant academic school, and from the Secretariat. Representatives from Leeds University Union (LUU) and residential accommodation may also attend, if appropriate. 

4. Case conferences are typically convened by the Head of Student Support following referral made by specialist teams within Student Support services or by Heads of Schools/Services. The meetings are called where it is agreed that a multidisciplinary response could best support the student. 

5. The meetings will:

• Review the current situation from different perspectives of the representatives.

• Assess whether there are risks for the student concerned, or other individuals more generally.

• Agree actions to investigate further, or to support or safeguard the student.

• Where relevant, input into the response to critical incidents.

Staff 

6. Staff may also encounter difficulties that will affect their wellbeing or behaviour.  If you are concerned about a member of staff, you should contact their line manager or head of the relevant School or Service. Depending upon the nature of the concerns, the matter may be referred to the Human Resources service.  An appropriate programme of support for the individual will be put in place.

Indicators of concern

7. As mentioned above, there is no single way to determine whether an individual is encountering difficulties, but some indicators might be: 

  • Continuous low mood or sadness.
  • Feeling constantly ‘on edge’.
  • Expressing feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.
  • Having suicidal thoughts or thoughts about self-harm.
  • Substantive changes in appearance.
  • Moving or speaking more slowly than usual.
  • Making decisions or saying things that are out of character, including use of unacceptable, anti-social or extremist language.
  • Expressing hatred or gross intolerance of particular groups of people.
  • Threatening violence against themselves or others (including terrorism-related).
  • Changes in appetite or weight.
  • Sleeping more than usual or being unable to sleep.
  • Lack of concentration on everyday things like reading the paper or watching television, or neglecting hobbies and interests.
  • Changes in their pattern of attendance on programme-related activities.
  • Avoiding contact with friends and taking part in fewer social activities.
  • Friends, family or others expressing concern about an individual’s actions or behaviour.
  • Behaviour contrary to normal expectations, or shared values within society.

8. It is NOT your responsibility to make a precise determination or to challenge another member of the University, BUT you should refer the matter or seek further advice if you believe that you have justified cause for concern.

Further advice

9. Further advice about the University’s arrangements in this area is available from:

Chris Warrington, Head of Student Support

0113 34 34075;  c.j.warrington@adm.leeds.ac.uk

Linda Mortimer Pine, Deputy Director of HR

0113 34 34912;  l.mortimer-pine@adm.leeds.ac.uk