Barnehurst Federation of schools will make every effort to remain open whenever possible. The decision to close the school either before or during the school day will be made by the Head Teacher in partnership with the Site Manager. The school will only be closed if one or more of the following apply:
- Insufficient staff are able to come in to keep the school running safely
- Conditions on site are dangerous or health and safety cannot be maintained
- Conditions are considered to be or are anticipated to later become too hazardous for travel.
Staff are expected to attend for work at school, even if the school is closed to children, as long as it is safe for them to make their way there. Their work in school will be agreed by the senior management team. Where adverse weather conditions cause staff delays or difficulties in travelling to work, they should take all reasonable steps to make their way to school as soon as they possibly can, taking into account their personal safety. If staff are unable to get into work, they should telephone the Head or Deputy Headteacher at the earliest possible opportunity to explain the situation and agree what to do. Staff should continue to monitor the weather conditions during the day to see if they can attend work later, for example the afternoon.
If staff are unable to travel to work, it is expected that they work from home using PPA (planning, preparation, assessment) opportunities.
In the event of school closure the will also send parents a email via Parentmail. However, we know from past experience that the text messaging systems get overloaded and the message can be delayed quite severely. Please check that your Parentmail details are up to date.
The school closure will also be placed on the school website on a site wide alert and on our Facebook page
The Head Teacher will endeavour to make a decision as to whether the schools are open or closed by 7:30am.
Weather deterioration throughout the day
In the event of the school having to close during the day due to unforeseen worsening weather or similar unforeseen circumstances, parents will be contacted by email and/or text message phone either advising them to collect their child. Such an early release will only be contemplated in extreme circumstances.
Staff who are likely to face particular difficulties in getting home may have to leave work early, taking into account their personal safety. This decision will be taken in collaboration with the Head Teacher. Minimum cover arrangements in school will be provided by employees who do not have a particularly long or difficult journey home to ensure staffing ratios are maintained for the safety of the children.
On- site safety
In the event of snow, some pathways will be cleared and salted. Parents, children, staff and visitors should be aware that pathways, even where cleared, may remain dangerous.
In icy conditions the site manager will salt wide pathways as follows:
A) Through the infant playground with access to reception and the Junior building.
B) From the infant playground to the car park.
C) Throughout the driveway.
Where necessary, essential pathways will be maintained as clear as possible throughout the day. The car park will not necessarily be cleared of ice and snow and staff should be aware that due care must be taken at all times.
During adverse weather conditions, parts of the playgrounds and Early Years outdoor provision including reception and nursery outdoor areas, may be restricted by use of the children. This will be risk assessed by the supervising outdoor staff and/or Head Teacher and access reduced or suspended if they are deemed unsafe but either of the above.
In the Head Teacher’s absence the most Senior teacher on site will assume responsibility for making all decisions relating to the adverse weather.