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Annual reminder of severe weather contingency

11th January 2017

As the season for wintry weather approaches, I would like to remind parents that we have developed a protocol for dealing with snowy conditions which has worked well in the past.  Whilst we need to maintain the health and safety of all students, we will always endeavour to keep the school open wherever possible so as to preserve the education of the students.

1. Keeping the school open

Our Site Staff have sufficient supplies of grit to see us through the winter and access to snow clearing equipment.  Their first priority is to clear the entrance and essential paths around the school gates.  The playground, however, cannot practically be made safe and will be closed during heavy falls of snow.  The Site Staff are scheduled to work from 5:30am. However, on days with heavy snow, it may take them some time to make the site safe.

2. Informing parents, students and staff

Although we will post severe weather information on our website experience tells us that this can be an unreliable way of getting information out to parents.  This is because all schools in London use the same internet service provider (ISP) and the band-width will simply not cope with everyone in the capital logging on all at once.  Similarly, our phone lines get jammed and it becomes difficult to alter the recorded message. From our experience, the most efficient way of keeping in contact is by Twitter.

The best thing to do is to follow us @woodcotehigh if you have a Twitter account and any information will appear on your Twitter feed or just type in the link above if you do not have a Twitter account.  We will update this as regularly as possible. Please check from 7:30am.

3. Opening options

It is very unlikely that we will have to close the school but, if this is the case, then we will let people know on Twitter and by texting parents.  The most likely event is that we will run a modified timetable in order to preserve teaching whilst keeping everyone safe. In this case we will make the announcement on Twitter and NOT text parents. The three opening options are:

Timetable 1 – the normal timetable

Timetable 2 – for use when students and staff are able to get in on time but areas of the school grounds are inaccessible

Timetable 3 – for use when it is difficult to get staff and students into school first thing in the morning. This timetable allows for a later start to ensure that people can get in on time.

Copies of these timetables are below, please download a copy to keep - timetable

Our priority is to keep the school open as well as keeping everyone as safe as possible.  Parents can play their part by checking early to find out about the latest situation and by ensuring that students know when to be in school.  When timetables 2 or 3 are in operation, students may wear boots or other sturdy footwear to school.

Thank you for your continued cooperation.

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