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Littlebourne Church of England Primary School

Together, we grow, thrive and achieve

Severe Weather

In order for us to fully prepare of severe weather, we will:


  • Review and replenish our salt supplies by the end of the Autumn Term

  • Discuss plans in advance

  • Ensure all parents are connected to ParentMail


Decisions on status of the school during severe weather


We will gather information from:


  • Any members of staff who live in the village to enable us to understand how the local conditions may impact us as a school – this will be completed at or before 7am where possible.

  • The caretaker, who is the first person to travel to school, to clear paths – this will be complete at or before 7:15am where possible.

  • Members of staff who contact the Headteacher or the SBM at home to let them know that it is likely that they will not be able to travel into the school or will have longer journeys than normal – this will be completed before 7:15am where possible.

  • The BBC weather website for the forecast linked to Canterbury and the surrounding areas.

  • Kent Police Travel advice website.

  • Other local heads within the rural area.

  • The Headteacher will note advice from other public authorities including the Area Education Officer before making a final decision.


The Headteacher will make the decision about the school status by 7:15am wherever possible, with the default decision being to stay open whenever possible.


We will take the following factors into account:


  • Safety on site including the ratio of staff to pupils.

  • Maintaining an acceptable working temperature.

  • Access to the school from the surrounding area, from where people travel from and the ability to park safely, either for staff or parents when dropping off and collecting.

  • Being able to decide early enough for minimal disruption to take place.

  • Whenever possible to keep the school open for childcare for working parents.

  • The ability for parents to bring their children to school and to collect them at the end of the day.


If any extenuating circumstances prevail, a measured approach will be taken and the headteacher reserves the right to modify how the school opens in order to take this into consideration.


It is the responsibility of individual members of staff to decide whether their journey is safe, considering whether an earlier start, a late start or a slower journey will help with this.


It is parent’s responsibility to decide if car journeys are safe or if the distance is short enough and it is safer to walk to school.


The school’s status will be decided by considering:


Staffing Availability

Weather Conditions - Canterbury


At least three quarters of staff, regardless of their role are able to make it into school. At least one DSL on site. Breakfast Club staff are able to make it onsite.


Stable or improving conditions

Open all day as usual with breakfast club being offered if staff are already on site.

Deteriorating conditions

Open with a possibility of stating a time for early closure if needed.

Less than three quarters of staff can make it on site.

Of those on site, at least one is a teacher member and at least is part of the senior leader team.

Stable or improving conditions


Open but possibly close to some groups of children due to pupil age or staffing difficulties.

Deteriorating conditions

Closed to all except the children of those parents who need to work outside the home (childcare provision in place).

Significantly reduced members of staff available to site with no member of the senior leadership team, DSL and/or school conditions are too dangerous.

Stable or deteriorating conditions

The school to remain closed.


The ability to offer safe remote learning may also impact on our decision making.


The decision made will be communicated:



Extended School Services:


Our breakfast club status will reflect that of the school although we may consider different start and finish times depending on the severity of the weather.


When the school is open in severe weather:


  • The Headteacher will ensure that provision is in place to receive pupils by 8:35am (or by the time the school will open if this has changed or has been delayed).
  • Where a decision is made to keep the school open it is expected that pupils will remain on site for the normal school day.
  • Only under exceptional circumstances would the school close early and then only when the Headteacher is satisfied that a responsible adult can safely escort children home.


Absence during severe weather:


  • If the school is open it is assumed that all pupils within walking distance will attend unless they are ill, in which case parents will need to inform the school before 9:00am.
  • Pupils will be marked as absent if they are not in school.