Incidents resulting in school closure

Events, such as extreme weather, public transport failures or overnight damage to the school, may result in the need or expectation for a school to close. School closures should be a last resort and only taken on health and safety grounds, where the site is physically unsafe or there are insufficient staff to safely supervise students (although this should result in partial rather than complete closure).

In these cases, the Principal will need to be aware of staff absences and will need to communicate the decision to close/keep open the school to parents, staff and pupils. In the event of closing the school, the principal will inform Ark (either the MD or COO).

Informing the principal of absence

Where staff cannot contact the school office, they should inform the Principal as soon as possible if they are unable to come to work. In order of preference, this should be communicated via:

(a) Email
(b) SMS message to Principal’s mobile
(c) Voice message to Principal’s mobile

Informing Ark of school closure

The principal should contact Ark's Managing Director or Chief Operating Officer as soon as they are aware of a likely school closure, and then confirm once a decision has been taken.

Communicating closure or normal opening to parents

When they have taken a decision to close/keep open the school, the Principal will inform parents and staff via the messaging system and ensure that appropriate members of staff update the website/social media and answerphone message as soon as possible.

Setting work for students

Schools should make every effort to provide work for students during school closure periods. This should include the use of the academy VLE as well as more traditional methods.