Thursday, 2 December 2010

DfE releases advice on Adverse Weather School Closures

The Department of Education has released updated information on the subject of School Closures during adverse weather. Over 4,000 Schools were closed today across the UK.

"The recent severe weather has hit many parts of the country, and has disrupted schools alongside many other sectors. We are grateful to the headteachers, school staff and local communities who have worked hard to keep their schools open.

The decision whether to close must be for headteachers. They know their schools and the surrounding areas. We hope that they will continue to use common sense in assessing risks and keep their schools open whenever it is safe to do so. Schools play a key role in their local communities and by staying open help both their pupils and parents.

Headteachers should not be worried about the impact that remaining open may have on their attendance statistics. We have in September 2010 amended the relevant regulations so that, when a pupil cannot get in because of severe weather, the school can use attendance code Y, which means that the pupil’s absence will not affect the attendance statistics. If the headteacher believes that a child could have got to school, then the child should be recorded as code O for unauthorised absence".

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