The decision to close the school to all or some students is something that the Headteacher and Governors do not take lightly and is an extremely rare occurrence. The school will only close where the safety of students would otherwise be compromised or strike action deems it necessary.
In the case of bad weather (for example heavy snow) any decision to close the school is taken after considering the safety of the school site, along with discussions with the school bus companies in relation to the likelihood of worsening road conditions. Approximately 650 students travel to school on school buses. Their safety is paramount and the consideration of school transport risks largely determines if we need to close the school when there is bad weather.
If the school closes before the start of the day, the decision will usually be taken before 7.00am and parents will be informed via email/text message/Facebook/Twitter. In addition, a message will be posted on the homepage of the school website. Also, the following local radio stations are informed, who will usually announce the closure:
- BBC Radio Cleveland
- BBC Radio Newcastle
- Alpha FM
- Metro FM
- Sun FM
The speed with which stations broadcast information will vary according to the severity of the weather and the volume of school closures. The reopening of the school will NOT be broadcast. Only the continued closure will usually be broadcast on a daily basis. Parents are advised to check the school website homepage daily after the initial closure for any updates.
The BBC also posts information on their websites. Parents are advised to check BBC Tees first and then Wear and Tyne. The closure will also be posted on Durham County Council website. Please check these regularly for updates.
If school closes during the school day, every effort will be made to contact all parents via email/text message. No student will be released unless we are sure that they have safe transport home and a secure and supervised place to return to. This may be through agreed arrangements between family friends or relatives.
If you wish to discuss particular arrangements, please don’t hesitate to contact the school.
Parents will appreciate that it is ESSENTIAL that we have accurate emergency contact details on our school records. Please ensure that the school is promptly provided with any changes to contact details.