Health and Safety


College Health and Safety Officer: Nick Stubbs (Tech IOSH) 

Contracted for 10 hours per week. Attendance pattern provided on staff intranet and in weekly bulletin. 

The college is committed to provide a learning environment that is safe and healthy for all learners, staff, visitors and contractors. 

The college Health and Safety Policy provides detailed information for all areas relevant to college activities. 

This may be summarised as follows: 

Accidents and Incidents:

The college has its own accident and incident report form available on the staff intranet. Hard copies are also available in the main reception. 

All reports must be completed accurately and legibly and forwarded to the H&S Officer for review and investigation. Reports may be submitted in hard copy form and placed in the H&S Officer’s post tray in the staff room or electronically to

Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH):

The COSHH Regulations were one of the first to introduce a risk-based approach to the use of hazardous substances. Science departments have access to the CLEAPS system of assessments that must be used when identifying appropriate control measures. 

Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Assessment:

A user of display screen equipment is defined as anyone who spends a significant proportion of their working time using computers, and must complete a workstation assessment. 

The assessment will help identify any factors that may have a detrimental effect to the user’s health or posture. Adaptations to workstations may include the provision of a screen riser, wrist support pads, document holders and eye tests, funded by the college. 

First Aid:

A list of current trained first aid personnel is available on the staff intranet. The location of first aid kits is also included on the list. 

First aid-trained personnel include three-day First Aid at Work persons and one-day Emergency First Aid at Work persons. Either may attend an incident or accident.

Due to the attendance pattern of staff, a rota has been designed to enable Reception staff to identify available trained persons who can be summoned in the event of a medical emergency or accident. 

The emergency telephone number is 666. This will enable Reception staff to identify and contact the most appropriate trained person to attend the emergency. 

Any treatment provided must be recorded on the accident/incident report form. 

Where a student is unable to continue with their attendance at college following an accident or incident, this information must be provided to their tutor, school team or Registry.  

Manual Handling:

Moving and handling activities account for over a third of all workplace injuries. All handling activities were there is a risk of injury must be avoided, where possible, by the use of equipment or mechanisation. Where manual handling activities cannot be avoided, they must be assessed, taking into account the following four factors: 

  • The task
  • The individual
  • The load
  • The environment 

Measures to reduce the risk of injury can then be identified and implemented.

Training is available for all staff in safe manual handling principles and practices. 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Where PPE has been identified as necessary through risk assessment, it must be provided free of charge to employees. 

It is the employee’s responsibility to use the required PPE, to look after it, store it safely, and report any defects. 

A full range of PPE is available for all teaching areas. 

Risk Assessment

Risk assessment is viewed as one of the cornerstones of successful health and safety management. All teaching and support staff teams are responsible for completing suitable and sufficient assessments for their activities and areas of work.

Advice and support is available from Heads of Schools and the Health and Safety Officer. 

A standard form for recording risk assessments is stored on the college pool drive. This is the only form that is acceptable. Assessments must be reviewed and if necessary, updated during the summer term as part of the self-assessment process.

Any significant changes, such as the introduction of new equipment, materials or process, must be considered and the assessment updated as necessary. 

Assessment must also consider issues associated with lone working, pregnant employees, newly nursing mothers, and young persons under the age of 18. 

All college related visits and trips must be risk assessed and approved before being authorised. 

Work at Height

All working at height should be avoided, where possible. If it cannot be avoided, it must be assessed and the risk of falling reduced by collective measures in preference to individual measures. Equipment for safe working at height is available from the Site Team.



Asbestos Information

“Because the environment is calm and caring, and the people in college are very friendly and welcoming.”

“Since the first time I came to an Open Evening, I loved the ambience of the College. It is very friendly and warm. It offered the IB, which I wanted to do.”

“As everyone says (and rightly so) the atmosphere at Varndean College simply felt the most welcoming to me, with its open green spaces and strong sense of Art.”

“I loved the campus and the atmosphere, the teachers are all so friendly and the College itself makes you feel at home. I have had a fabulous two years.”