WARNING! SEVERE WEATHER
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ADVICE AND GUIDANCE FOR STAFF, PARENTS AND TRANSPORT STAFF
This advice and guidance is to make clear and consistent the expectations of school to staff,
parents, carers and transport staff in the event ofsevere and adverse weather conditions.
The intention is to ensure the safety and wellbeingof all concerned.
The school will make every effort to make decisionsabout school closure based upon the
best information available at the time. Risk assessments will need to be carried out and
decisions made following these assessments. LarwoodSchool receives pupils from across
the whole of Hertfordshire and obviously weather conditions may well be different in other
parts of the county. It follows that parents, carers and transport staff will need to make their
own risk assessment in their local area, based uponthe best information available to them.
PARENTS AND CARERS
If your child is at home and the weather conditionslocally to you are severe, then you must
decide first of all if you wish your child to be leaving home. It is your right to keep your child
at home even if the school is open and the taxis are available, if you consider it unsafe for
your child to be travelling. I would ask you to communicate this decision to the taxi driver
and the school as soon as you are able.
TRANSPORT STAFF, DRIVERS AND ESCORTS
Firstly, your commitment to meet your obligation totransport the children safely to and
from school is acknowledged, appreciated and unquestioned.
If however the weather conditions locally to you and /or where you know you have to
travel, are severe, then you will naturally make your own risk assessment of the situation
and make a professional decision as to whether it is safe to travel or not. I would also ask
that you consider the likelihood of getting the children home safely in the afternoon if you
are able to bring them into school in the morning.
I know that you already make every effort to keep parents and the school informed of
decisions and changes and that this will continue.
If before the start of school in the morning, weather conditions in Stevenage are severe, the
school will make a risk assessment of the situationand determine if the school is to be open.
We will make this decision as early as possible andwill firstly communicate this decision to
taxi operators and drivers and then we will contactall parents. The importance of having up
to date contact telephone numbers is obvious.
If the children are in school and the weather becomes severe during the school day, then we
will again make a risk assessment of the situation based on local information and the
weather forecasts, and make a decision as to getting children home safely while it remains
safe to do so. This may well mean closing the school early.
Taxi operators will be contacted and parents will be contacted as soon as we are able,
following the decision to close the school.
If the school is to be closed but boarders are already in school, then we will make every
effort to get those children home safely. Keeping children in school will always be
dependent upon the availability of staff who themselves may have difficulty getting into
school as some travel a considerable distance.
In the event of severe conditions, school staff should consider the school open unless a
specific communication of closure has been received. Staff will need to make their own risk
assessment of the situation based upon local information and determine if it is safe to
travel. It is expected that school staff make everyeffort to attend school if the school is
open and if children are already in school as boarders. It is also expected that staff make
every effort to come to school later if conditions have improved.
The school will make every effort to contact you inadvance of your travel if the school is to
be closed and all children are already at home. Similarly the school will take into account the
need for staff to get home, particularly those withyoung families, if the weather becomes
severe during the school day. It is appreciated that many staff do make themselves available
to remain in school until children have been able to get home