This policy has been approved and adopted by the Governing Body in September 2020 and will be reviewed in September 2023.
The School will undertake to ensure compliance with the relevant legislation with regard to the management of snow and icy conditions for all pupils and employees and to ensure best practice by extending the arrangements as far as is reasonably practicable to others who may also be affected by our activities.
As legislation is often amended and Regulations introduced, the references made in this Policy may be to legislation that has been superseded. For an up to date list of legislation applying to schools, please refer to the Department for Education website at www.gov.uk/education and the Health and Safety Executive website www.hse.gov.uk.
a. Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
b. Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.
The Headteacher is responsible for taking appropriate measures, including the decision as to whether to close the school, in the event of snow and icy conditions.
OPENING/CLOSING THE SCHOOL
In the event of snow and/or icy conditions a decision will need to be taken as to whether to open or close the school;
If there is heavy snow during the day, consideration should be given to allowing parents the option of collecting pupils early before conditions worsen.
Heavy snow overnight will require early morning decision taking, for which the Headteacher and staff should be prepared. Therefore during winter months, a close watch must be kept on weather forecasts broadcast by the media or on line at the Met Office at http://metoffice.gov.uk/weather/uk/uk_forecast_weather.html or the BBC at http://news.bbc.co.uk/weather
Information is also available from HCC.
In the event of overnight snowfall then as far as possible the school will endeavour to make a decision by 7.30am as to whether to close the school. This will enable parents to be informed as soon as possible and avoid an unnecessary, and potentially dangerous trip to school.
The Headteacher will initiate the following actions contacting and delegating tasks to staff as required;
If opening the school in marginal conditions consider;
Informing parents/staff by 7.30am, using the school website, that despite the weather conditions the school will open and that children should attend if the parents consider it is safe for them to travel to school.
The message on the home page of the school website should include the day and date that the school is open; do not use “today”.
SCHOOL CLOSURE PROCEDURE
If the school is closed or partially closed due to weather conditions or emergency this is the procedure to follow;
In the event that the headteacher has made the decision to close the school the following staff will be directly involved with advance measures;
STAFF TRAVELLING TO SCHOOL
It is an individual staff decision as to whether it is safe to travel in to school. Staff who cannot travel must notify the school as early as possible. Through the normal reporting procedure.
If there is only a skeleton staff available at school, staff who can get in will supervise the children. Staff who cannot get in will email the school office with work and update it throughout the day. All staff are aware of the procedure. We will evaluate the effectiveness as we do each school closure.
COPING WITH SNOW AND ICY CONDITIONS IN SCHOOL
The school will maintain a stock of at least 4 bags of salt grit and snow shovels which are kept in the caretaker’s cupboard.
In icy conditions, the Headteacher will ensure that;
The Headteacher is responsible for snow clearance at the beginning of each day. The caretaker is responsible for maintaining the salt supply and clearing snow of contracted work days.
Clearance should concentrate on providing a clear, gritted walkway from the pedestrian gate, down the ramp and to the main KS1 entrance and KS2 doors.
The immediate area around fire exits should be cleared but if this is not possible, as a minimum, the immediate area should be gritted. Fire doors should be checked that they are able to be opened.
Cones should be used to warn of dangerous areas and as temporary barriers. These are kept in the PE cupboard.
PARENT INFORMATION ON SCHOOL CLOSURE
Prior to any warnings of snow and ice conditions the School Business Manager will send an email to all parents advising them that information on school closure will be on;
Parents are to be advised that school meals are as normal unless otherwise stated on the website.
Prior to the Christmas holiday details will be sent to parents with the above information about school closures.