chapter  4
8 Pages

Chapter 4

The school health and safety manual

The law requires that all employers prepare a Statement of Health and Safety Policy together with a description of the organisation and arrangements that are in place to deliver that policy. This means that governing bodies of foundation and voluntary aided schools will need to prepare a policy for their schools. As this policy is required by law, it should be presented to a regular meeting of the full governing body and, after it has been formally accepted by the meeting, signed and dated by the Chair of Governors. In community and voluntary controlled schools, the Local Education Authority employs the staff and therefore it must produce a policy. This policy will not only state its commitment to the health and safety of staff, pupils and persons affected by what the LEA does, but also describe its organisation and arrangements for health and safety. Even where the local authority is the employer, many aspects of organisation and arrangements will naturally be specific to the school. This means that whilst an LEA can make general arrangements for, for instance, accident reporting, those for items such as supervision of outside areas will have to be made by the school itself. Some LEAs offer minimum standards for such arrangements whilst others leave it to individual schools to make arrangements based on their local risk assessment. It is reasonable for community and voluntary controlled schools to expect their LEA to provide a system that (a) establishes and advises schools of the standards expected and also (b) provides up-to-date information on issues and events to help inform school decision making. In practice, voluntary aided schools and foundation schools use the material provided by their maintaining LEA.