Bad Weather Procedure

What happens if it snows on a school day?

On rare occasions, particularly in winter, the weather can be so severe that getting to and from school becomes hazardous. It is also possible that the weather deteriorates during the course of the day that it is necessary to enable students to leave the premises a little early in order to do so more safely.

We are aware that bad weather by its nature is disruptive and can cause anxiety.  Please be aware that if many parents ring the school it can be difficult to answer the calls as the lines can quickly become jammed.  Therefore any action due to poor weather will be posted immediately on our website, communicated by twitter and text message to parents.

Decisions about closing the school or sending pupils home early will not be taken lightly, we will endeavour to open the school when it is practicable to be able to do so. We will check weather reports, get advice from the bus companies, and try to assess what is happening elsewhere in the country. Some buses may not be available; operators have to decide whether running vehicles on particular routes in snow and ice is too high a risk. Drivers are rarely available at times other than scheduled school runs. This is why schools often take their lead from the bus companies when deciding what to do.

Here is our advice to you on what to do:

If there is severe weather overnight

If the school has to be closed, a message will be read out on local radio. Please do not try to contact the radio station directly it is unlikely that they will be able to respond.

Closure will also be communicated by text message to parents/carers, messages on our main school switchboard, on our website and through our twitter account.

If any student arrives at school unaware of the closure, a member of staff will be there to help. Students may phone parents without charge to decide whether they should return home or wait to be collected.

If the weather deteriorates during the day

1. The school will be closed early only in extreme cases.

2. The closure may be staggered. Students who live furthest from the school may go first depending on road conditions.

3. The decision to close the school will be made by the Headteacher and senior colleagues after consulting the bus companies. The Chair of Governors will be informed if he is available.

4. Decisions about early closure will be communicated to staff and pupils as soon as this is appropriate.

5. Students who use school buses will be told of any change to normal routes if this occurs so they can decide the best way home.

6. Students being collected from school or with other arrangements will be allowed to phone home for advice on what to do.

7. Students who can walk home will be sent preferably in family groups or in the company of other students who live near each other.

8. School will be kept open with staff on hand until the last student has left.

9. It is not normally possible for students to be given lifts by staff.

10. In the event of a school closure announced during the morning, best efforts will be made to ensure those students entitled to a free school meal are provided with a sandwich and a drink as a minimum.

How parents can help...

Check the website/ twitter for information communicated by the academy.

Assume school is open if the radio/ website/ social media does not announce otherwise.

Plan ahead with your child what to do in a bad weather emergency.

Only call the school in bad weather if you really have to - calls in prevent calls out!

Advice to students for extreme weather conditions

If you arrive by 8.25am go straight to your form room (or a designated space) when the bell sounds.

If your Form Tutor has not arrived, wait by the room until another member of staff arrives to take registration and give you instructions.

Students should not throw snow or snowballs either inside the building or on school premises. During snowy weather it is likely to always be considered a wet break/lunch – students will be expected to remain in the dining room or the atrium and not to go outside of the building.

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