School Counsellor Required: Cobham, Surrey


ACS International Schools

ACS International Schools Cobham requires a School Counsellor and Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead to start in August 2024.

ACS School Counsellors promote student success, achievement, behaviour, and school safety in our international environment. The School Counsellor serves as an advocate for all students, a consultant to families and educators, and a collaborator to promote equity and access by connecting school counselling to our purpose, vision, and values. The Deputy DSL is the initial staff contact for all Safeguarding and Child Protection matters which arise in the student population for whom they are responsible. Their work is overseen by the DSL and Group DSL.

Prior experience as a School Counsellor and a Designated Safeguarding Lead in a school setting are essential for this role.

At ACS International School Cobham, our mission is to develop students who are ready for anything, meaning we are an active learning partner rather than a passive education provider. Underpinned by the International Baccalaureate DP, AP and American curricula, we emphasise life skills and student wellbeing as much as academic excellence, with a focus on experiential learning and leadership ensuring we nurture confident, caring, well-rounded international individuals who are ready for a world that is ever changing. Our diverse and inclusive student body is made up of 70 different nationalities. We offer boarding to over 100 Middle, Upper and High school students. All students have access to extensive co-curricular and enrichment programmes. ACS Cobham’s 128 acre campus is 25 miles from central London, offering world class facilities. We have a sports centre with a 25m indoor pool, gym, tennis courts, 400m track, playing fields, floodlit astroturf pitches, dance studio, performing arts centre with a 500+ seat auditorium, IT hubs, science labs, interactive learning centre, art and music studios, just to name a few.

Key responsibilities:

  • To provide direct and indirect services to advocate for and support students with their personal and academic goals
  • Support the healthy development of global perspective and identity
  • Promote a positive school climate by helping to design and deliver a comprehensive student support system for student mental health and wellbeing
  • Be an advocate for students’ development with key stakeholders within the community
  • Assist to ensure children’s welfare as a Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead, coordinating effectively with community resources
  • Uses the International Model for School Counselling Programmes (ISCA) to develop comprehensive counselling services, liaising with Advisory and PSHE programme leads as a subject matter expert on social, emotional and mental health
  • Lead professional learning and growth that helps staff understand current trends in social-emotional learning, student wellbeing and child protection
  • Advocate for the professional role through engagement with a considered program of counselling and effective and data-driven planning
  • Hold the necessary status and authority within the school to carry out the duties of the post, including delivering training and supporting, and directing other staff to safeguard and actively promote the welfare of all children
  • Maintain an overview of safeguarding and child protection matters within an identified section of the school, including low level concerns Ensure that all associated categories relevant to a vulnerable child are known and considered (including category crossover with SEN/Learning Support, SEMH concerns, and Behaviour Plans), when designing Student Safeguarding Plans and Risk Assessments
  • Maintain high levels of confidentiality and diplomacy, responding appropriately and promptly to students, staff and visitors
  • To ensure that business operations are conducted within the boundaries of ACS’ Health and Safety policy and procedures
  • To undertake any other such duties or general tasks and hours of work as may reasonably be required, and work in other locations within the ACS International Schools group as required Lead by example, exemplifying the ACS International Schools values – Imagine Better, Welcome Everyone, Aim High & Make It Happen, Work Together, and Act With Kindness.

Knowledge, Skills and Experience required:

  • Degree in Counselling or a related field and/or certification or licensure as a School Counsellor is essential
  • Minimum of 2 years of experience as a School Counsellor or related position is essential
  • Previous experience working as a Counsellor with children and adolescents in an international school setting is desirable
  • Knowledge and understanding of The International Model for School Counselling Programs is preferred or a commitment to undertake the training to become an effective leader and change-maker within the ISCA framework
  • In depth knowledge of cultural bias and how it can impact international populations is essential
  • Experience working with a culturally and linguistically diverse population is desirable
  • In-depth knowledge of child and adolescent development and expertise in addressing presenting and underlying issues is essential
  • Ability to appropriately and flexibly prioritise when safeguarding or other immediate concerns arise without notice
  • Excellent organisational and time management skills
  • English communication skills at a professional level
  • High level of interpersonal skills
  • Ability to collaborate in teams in a variety of circumstances.

Start date: August 2024

Working hours: Term time, Monday to Friday, 35 hours per week, 8:30 – 4:30pm, on site in Cobham, Surrey, UK

Salary: Competitive

Benefits: PMI, pension, relocation allowance, visa support, subsidised catering and more.


ACS is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and as an employee of ACS you are expected to share this commitment. The protection of our students’ welfare is the responsibility of all staff within ACS International Schools and individuals are expected to conduct themselves in a way that reflects the principles of our organisation.


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