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Severe Weather Procedure

“Schools should, wherever possible, stay open in severe weather. They play a key role in their communities and by staying open help both their pupils and parents.” – Department for Education

 

Every winter brings the possibility of snow and ice. Schools are often affected and it can be difficult to maintain an education service. As a fundamental principle every effort must be made to keep schools open, even if only limited numbers of pupils can attend. However schools may close due to ‘unavoidable’ circumstances. Those circumstances being that it is no longer safe for staff or pupils to be on site.

 

We recognise it is important our school remains open so parents are able to work and pupils can continue to learn. St. Thomas’ will make every effort to prepare for severe snow/ice this winter by e.g. gritting pathways, clearing access points etc.

 

 

How will we let you know if the school is closed?

 

If we do experience severe snow/ice resulting in hazardous conditions, I may have to take the decision to close the school. Once this decision has been made we will notify parents via the Kent Closures website. To determine whether the school is open or closed please visit www.kentclosures.co.uk. Search for the school in the search box. The Kent Closures website can also be used to find out if other services in Kent are open or closed, such as nurseries, children’s centres and libraries. We also recommend parents sign up for SMS/Email alerts on the Kent Closures website. This service will send an SMS or email alert to let parents know if St. Thomas’ is closed. Parents can also listen to KMFM, BBC Radio Kent or Heart FM to hear if the school has closed.

The Kent Closures Website
Updated January 2019

 

The Kent Closures website allows a school representative to log in (with a school specific password) and change the ‘status’ of the school to ‘open’, ‘closed’ or ‘partially closed’. The information will then be displayed on the website for parents and staff. Additionally, a parent or member of staff can then request to receive an email when a status is changed by the school. It is completely free to state funded schools (including Academies & Free Schools) in the KCC area

 

 

Parent and Staff Action

1. Register with the Kent Closures Website

 

To receive notifications, you should register for alerts.

 

Visit www.kentclosures.co.uk and click the ‘Register for Alerts’ button on the left side of the screen.

Fill in your

  • first name
  • surname
  • house number
  • postcode
  • email address
  • password
  • re-type password

Then click register

 

2. Register for School Alerts

Once you have registered, you need to tell the system which school(s) you want to receive alerts from.

 

Register Yourself

Visit www.kentclosures.co.uk and click the ‘Alerts Login’ button on the left side of the screen.

Fill in your

  • email address
  • password

Then click ‘sign in’

 

Register to Receive Alerts from your Choice of School

Under ‘Add a School’

  • Using the drop down menu, choose the town or village nearest to the school you want to receive alerts from, the drop down menu
  • Using the next drop down menu, choose the school
  • Click on ‘add school to alerts’
  • You can add as many schools as you wish.

 

You should now receive an email if there is a status change reported by your chosen schools

 

SMS Service

The SMS service is no longer being offered as an option. Any parents with outstanding credit will still continue to receive alerts, but no new requests for SMS alerts will be accepted. All alerts are by email.

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