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School Closure policy

REVIEW DATE: Autumn 2023

The decision to close the school is a serious one and our main consideration to do so must always be in protecting our pupils and staff from perceived health and safety risks. Therefore, school closures will be made by assessing the risks to students and staff of the school remaining open.

Schools may be unable to open for a variety of reasons including:

  • Breakdown of the heating system
  • Frozen or burst pipes
  • Inaccessibility of roads/or the site due to heavy snow or storm damage
  • Local threat / other health & safety reasons

In the case of extreme weather, the decision to close school will be made as early as possible and it is the Headteacher’s responsibility to make this decision about whether school will remain open.  In so doing the Headteacher will take into consideration the “potential risks to staff and students travelling to school”, as well as our ability to provide a safe school site.

In the event of disruption caused by heavy snow the prime concern of the school must always be the safety of the pupils and staff.

Emergency Closures outside the school day (e.g. snow closures)

In the eventuality of the school being closed due to adverse weather conditions (e.g. risk caused by snow) the following procedures will be carried out:

  1. Headteacher will consult and take advice from the SLT. This should be done as early as possible and no later than 7.00am.

2. Upon making the decision to close the school, the Headteacher will send a text alert, using the SMS Bulk messaging, to all staff and parents. Ideally, this should be done before 7.15am but never later than 7.30am. In the event of the Headteacher being absent from school, the SLT will send the text message to staff and parents. If parents and staff do not receive a message, then they must assume that school is open as usual.

3. As a secondary form of communication the School Office Manager (currently G. Deakin) will post a message on the school webpage and Facebook page to inform that the school is closed. This is done within one hour of the text alert being sent out and will be taken down by the Office Manager at 3.00pm on the day of school closure. Therefore, if weather conditions suggest that the school might potentially be closed, it is imperative that parents and staff ensure that their mobile phones are switched on and that they check the school website and Facebook page.

In the event of the school, being closed on more than one day the above process will be repeated.

Emergency Closures within the school day

It is the Headteacher’s responsibility to make this decision. In the event of the school having to be closed during the school day, the following procedures will be carried out:

  1. The Headteacher will consult and take advice from the SLT
  • Upon making the decision to close the school the School Office will send a text alert, using the SMS Bulk messaging, to parents asking them to collect their child from school asap. The message will read “School is closed because of snow. Please collect your child asap. Trinity School.
  • Immediately after sending the text message the SLT and school office staff will then alert all staff of the decision to close school.
  • Older pupils who travel to and from school independently will be allowed to travel home in their normal way and without having to wait to be picked up by a parent unless otherwise informed.
  • Younger pupils and those who do not travel to school independently must wait with their Class or Form teacher until the parent or person collecting them arrives.
  • The Headteacher and SLT will remain at school until all pupils have exited the school building.

Waiting for children to be collected by parents:

The Headteacher and SLT will take responsibility for organising supervision of children whilst they are waiting to be collected by parents. To assist with this, all staff should wait with the children that they are responsible for until being released by the Head or SLT who will seek to release staff according to the needs of the children and the zones in Appendix 1 below.

To keep children safe, the school reserves the right to ask staff to remain at work for the duration of their contracted hours.

Closures due to other risks (health & safety / threats)

In the event of an actual lockdown, or other reason to close the school, communication will be sent to parents & staff as soon as is practicable and specific procedures will be followed.

Refer to the Critical Incident policy

Appendix 1

Red Zone:  furthest away to go first: Manchester, Stockport (Romiley, Woodly, Bredbury, Marple etc), Glossop (Hadfield, Tintwistle etc), Oldham (Grotton, Greenfield, Chadderton, Failsworth etc

Blue Zone: 2nd to go: Denton, Audenshaw, Ashton, Hollingworth, Hyde, Broadbottom, Mossely, Mottram etc

Green Zone: last to go / walking distance: Stalybridge, Dukinfield