“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
Severe Snow/Ice Plan for Parents and Families
Every winter brings the possibility of snow and ice. Extreme bad weather can cause widespread and prolonged disruption. 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 onsite.
We recognise that 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 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 St Thomas’ is open or closed please visit www.kentclosures.co.uk. Search for the school in the search box. The Kent Closures website may 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 Email alerts on the Kent Closures website. This service will send an email alert to let parents know if St Thomas’ is closed. Local radio will sometimes provide information of school closures.
What can you do to help?
Many thanks for your support in helping St Thomas’ remain open during periods of severe snow/ice.
The Kent Closures Website
Updated January 2023
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
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.
Visit www.kentclosures.co.uk and click the ‘Alerts Login’ button on the left side of the screen.
Fill in your
Then click ‘sign in’
Register to Receive Alerts from your Choice of School
Under ‘Add a School’
You should now receive an email if there is a status change reported by your chosen schools
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.