Health and Safety Policy

Date CreatedDate 1st Review DueDate ReviewedVersionNext Review Due
December 2022December 2023
November 20232November 2024

CONTENTS

1.INTRODUCTION4
2.HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICY STATEMENT5
3.HEALTH AND SAFETY RESPONSIBILITIES6
Principal6
Teachers7
Pupils8
Employees9
Contractors10
Visitors11
4.HEALTH AND SAFETY RULES12
General13
Working Practices13
Hazard/Warning Signs and Notices13
Protective Clothing & Equipment14
Fire Precautions14
Accidents14
Health14
Rules Covering Gross Misconduct15
5.ARRANGEMENT SUMMARY16
Competency for Tasks16
First Aid and Accidents16
Fire17
Off-Site Visits17
Work Experience17
6.ARRANGEMENTS18
Accident, Incident and Ill-Health Recording, Reporting & Investigation18
Asbestos20
Communication and Consultation23
Disabled Persons including Pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN)24
Display Screen Equipment26
Drugs and Alcohol28
Educational Visits29
Electricity33
Fire35
First Aid42
Gas Installations and Appliances48
Hazardous Substances (COSHH)49
Infection Control52
Legionnaires Disease54
Lone Working55
Manual Handling57
Needlestick or Sharps Injuries59
New and Expectant Mothers60
Personal Protective Equipment61
Risk Assessment62
Safeguarding63
Smoking65
Stress66
Supporting Pupils with Medical Needs67
Temporary Staff and Volunteers69
Training70
Violence to Staff72
Visitors73
Window Restrictors74
Work at Height75
Work Equipment77
7.RISK ASSESSMENT78
Risk Assessment78
Fire Risk Assessment82

INTRODUCTION

Egham Park School is committed to managing health and safety effectively to protect our employees and other persons with whom we interact because we recognise that we have not only a moral and legal duty but also that our employees are our greatest asset.

Our Health and Safety Policy Statement sets out our commitment and the objectives we aspire to in managing health and safety.

Our approach to managing health and safety will be pragmatic and proportionate and will be prioritised according to risk with the objective of maintaining continuous improvement. We accept that we cannot eliminate risk from everything we do but we can manage risk in such a way that exposure to hazards is controlled as far as is reasonably practical.

We recognise that improvement in health and safety will not happen by chance and that planning to manage using a systematic approach through risk assessment is a necessary first step and an ongoing process. In moving forwards, we will wherever possible eliminate risk through selection of facilities, equipment, and processes. Where risks cannot be eliminated, they will be minimised by the use of physical controls or, as a last resort, through systems of work and personal protection.

Our success in managing health and safety will be measurable and we look to establish performance standards against which we can monitor our progress to identify future actions.

Based on our performance measurement in the form of accident monitoring, internal monitoring, and external audits we will review our health and safety arrangements periodically and at least annually.

HEALTH & SAFETY POLICY STATEMENT

Egham Park School recognises that it has a legal duty of care towards protecting the health and safety of its employees, pupils and others who may be affected by the school’s activities.

In order to meet its responsibilities, the Principal will:

  • bring this Policy Statement to the attention of all employees
  • carry out and regularly review risk assessments to identify proportionate and pragmatic solutions to reducing risk
  • communicate and consult with employees on matters affecting their health and safety
  • comply fully with all relevant legal requirements, codes of practice and regulations
  • eliminate risks to health and safety, where possible, through selection and design of facilities, equipment, and processes
  • encourage staff to identify and report hazards so that we can all contribute towards improving safety
  • ensure that emergency procedures are in place dealing with health and safety issues
  • maintain our premises, provide, and maintain safe plant and equipment
  • only engage contractors who can demonstrate due regard to health & safety matters
  • provide adequate resources to control the health and safety risks arising from our work activities
  • provide adequate training and ensure that all employees are competent to do their tasks
  • provide information, and instruction for employees
  • regularly monitor performance and revise policies and procedures to pursue continuous improvement.

This Health and Safety Policy will be reviewed at least annually and revised as necessary to reflect changes to the schools’ activities and any changes to legislation. Any changes to the Policy will be brought to the attention of all employees.

HEALTH AND SAFETY RESPONSIBILITIES

The Principal and Senior staff will take all reasonable steps to identify and reduce hazards to a minimum. To assist in this all staff and pupils must be aware of their own and others personal safety in any of the schools’ activities, both on and off site.

Principal

The Principal has overall responsibility for ensuring compliance with Health and Safety legislation in the day to day running of the school but delegates the responsibility for implementation to all school staff.

The Principal will ensure that:

  • the Health and Safety Policy is implemented, monitored, developed, communicated effectively, reviewed, and amended as required
  • suitable and sufficient funds, people, materials, and equipment are provided to meet all health and safety requirements
  • any senior staff designated with health and safety responsibilities are provided with support to enable health and safety objectives to be met
  • a positive health and safety culture is promoted, and that senior staff develop a pro-active safety culture which will infiltrate into all activities undertaken and reach all personnel
  • employees are communicated with and consulted
  • effective training programmes are put into place

Teachers

Teachers will ensure that in their areas of responsibility:

  • they actively lead the implementation of the Health and Safety Policy
  • they supervise their staff and pupils to ensure that the lessons and activities are carried out safely
  • safe teaching practices are developed and implemented, risk assessments are completed, recorded, and regularly reviewed
  • accidents, ill health and ‘near miss’ incidents at work are investigated, recorded and reported to the Principal
  • they communicate and consult with staff on health and safety issues
  • they encourage staff and pupils to report hazards and raise health and safety concerns
  • safety training for staff is identified, undertaken, and recorded to ensure staff are competent to carry out their work in a safe manner
  • issues raised by anyone concerning safety are thoroughly investigated and, when necessary, further effective controls implemented
  • equipment is maintained in a safe condition
  • personal protective equipment where required is provided and that staff and pupils are instructed in its use
  • any safety issues that cannot be dealt with are referred to Principal for action
  • hazardous substances are stored, transported, handled, and used in a safe manner according to manufacturers’ instructions and established rules and procedures
  • agreed safety standards are maintained, particularly those relating to housekeeping
  • all relevant safety documents including, DfES Guides, etc. are maintained and made available to all employees
  • health and safety rules are followed by all staff and pupils.

Pupils

All pupils will be instructed to:

  • co-operate with all school staff on health and safety matters
  • not interfere with anything provided to safeguard their own health and safety or the safety of others
  • take reasonable care of their own health and safety, and report all health and safety concerns to a member of school staff

Employees

All employees must:

  • take reasonable care of their own safety
  • take reasonable care of the safety of others affected by their actions
  • observe the safety rules
  • comply with the Health and Safety Policy
  • conform to all written or verbal instructions given to them to ensure their personal safety and the safety of others
  • dress sensibly and safely for their working environment or occupation
  • conduct themselves in an orderly manner in the workplace
  • use all equipment, safety equipment, devices and protective clothing as directed
  • avoid any improvisations of any form which could create an unnecessary risk to their personal safety and the safety of others
  • maintain all equipment in good condition and report defects to their Line Manager
  • report any safety hazard or malfunction of any item of plant or equipment to their Line Manager
  • report all accidents to Principal whether an injury is sustained or not
  • attend as requested any health and safety training course
  • observe all laid down procedures for processes, materials and substances used
  • observe the fire evacuation procedure and the position of all fire equipment and fire exit routes.

Contractors

All contractors must:

  • take reasonable care of their own safety
  • take reasonable care of the safety of pupils, school staff and others affected by their actions
  • observe the safety rules of the school
  • comply with and accept our health and safety policy,
  • dress appropriately, sensibly, and safely when on school premises and for the task being undertaken
  • conduct themselves in an orderly manner in the workplace
  • use all equipment, safety equipment, devices and protective clothing as required by the school and as indicated in the risk assessment for the task
  • avoid any improvisations of any form which could create an unnecessary risk to their personal safety and the safety of others
  • maintain all equipment in good condition, not use any defective equipment and ensure that any portable electrical equipment bears a current test certificate
  • report any safety hazard or malfunction of any item of plant or equipment to their supervisor
  • report all incidents to their supervisor and to the school whether an injury is sustained or not
  • ensure that their employees only use equipment for which they have been trained
  • attend as requested any health and safety training course
  • observe all agreed procedures for processes, materials and substances used
  • observe the fire evacuation procedure and the position of all fire equipment and not obstruct fire exit routes or inhibit fire alarm sensors or devices

Visitors

  • All visitors are required to sign in at the reception. Visitors will be collected from reception by the member of staff concerned or escorted to the appropriate area of the school.
  • Whilst on site, all visitors, volunteers and contractors must wear a visitor’s badge and sign in at Reception.
  • If a member of staff meets someone on site who they do not recognise and is not wearing a visitors’ badge, they should, if they do not feel threatened, enquire if the person needs assistance and accompany them either to the reception or off the site, as appropriate.
  • If an intruder is uncooperative about going to the reception or leaving the site, or a member of staff feels threatened, or is threatened with violence or a violent attack takes place, immediate help from the Police should be sought by telephone

HEALTH AND SAFETY RULES

This section of our Health and Safety Policy specifies the rules laid down for the attention of all employees. These rules are prepared in accordance with legal requirements and acknowledged safe working practices. In addition to the legal duty imposed upon employees to comply with these rules, failure to observe them will be considered to be a breach of the contract of employment and will result in disciplinary action being taken.

Employees are reminded that a breach of health and safety legislation by an employee is a criminal offence and action taken by an Enforcing Officer against an individual may result in heavy penalties.

Safety rules may vary depending upon the nature of work and the circumstances therefore the overriding requirement is that employees are expected to act in a sensible manner and adhere to verbal instructions given.

General

  • It is the duty of all employees to co-operate in fulfilling our legal obligations in relation to health and safety.
  • Employees must not intentionally or recklessly interfere with anything provided in the interests of health, safety, or welfare.
  • Employees are required to notify the Principal of any unsafe activity, item, or situation.

Working Practices

  • Employees must not operate any item of plant or equipment unless they have been trained and authorised.
  • Employees must make full and proper use of all equipment guarding where applicable.
  • Employees must not clean any moving item of plant or equipment.
  • Employees must not make any repairs or carry out maintenance work of any description unless authorised to do so.
  • Employees must use all substances, chemicals, liquids etc, in accordance with all written instructions.
  • Employees must not smoke or vape anywhere on the school site.

Hazard / Warning Signs and Notices

  • Employees must comply with all hazard/warning signs and notices displayed on the premises.

Working Conditions / Environment

  • Employees must make proper use of all equipment and facilities provided to control working conditions/ environment.
  • Employees must keep stairways, corridors, classrooms, and work areas clear and in a clean and tidy condition.
  • Employees must dispose of all rubbish, scrap and waste materials using the facilities provided.
  • Employees must clear up any spillage or liquids in the prescribed manner.
  • Employees must deposit all waste materials and substances at the correct disposal points and in the prescribed manner.

Protective Clothing and Equipment

  • Employees must use all items of protective clothing/equipment provided as instructed.
  • Employees must store and maintain protective clothing/equipment in the approved manner.
  • Employees must report any damage, loss, fault, or unsuitability of protective clothing/equipment to their supervisor.

Fire Precautions

  • Employees must comply with all laid down emergency procedures.
  • Employees must not obstruct any fire escape route, fire equipment or fire doors.
  • Employees must not misuse any firefighting equipment provided.
  • Employees must report any use of firefighting equipment to the Principal.

Accidents

  • Employees must seek medical treatment for work related injuries they receive by contacting a designated first aider. Upon returning from treatment, they must report the incident to the school office staff.
  • Employees must ensure that any accident or injury treatment is properly recorded in the Accident Book.
  • Employees must notify the Principal of any incident in which damage is caused to property.

Health

Employees must report to Principal any medical condition or medication which could affect the safety of themselves or others

Employees must co-operate with the implementation of the medical and occupational health provisions.

Rules Covering Gross Misconduct

An employee will be liable to summary dismissal if they are found to have acted in any of the following ways:

  • a serious or wilful breach of Safety Rules
  • unauthorised removal or interference with any guard or protective device
  • unauthorised operation of any item of plant or equipment
  • unauthorised removal of any item of first aid equipment
  • wilful damage to, misuse of or interference with any item provided in the interests of Health and Safety or welfare at work
  • unauthorised removal or defacing or any label, sign, or warning device
  • horseplay or practical jokes which could cause accidents
  • making false statements or in any way deliberately interfering with evidence following an accident or dangerous occurrence
  • misuse of any item of equipment, utensil, fitting/ fixture, vehicle, or electrical equipment
  • deliberately disobeying an authorised instruction
  • misuse of chemicals or substances.

ARRANGEMENT SUMMARY

Risk Assessments

Risk Assessments will be undertaken by:

ClassroomsTeachers and Support Staff
OfficesOffice Staff
FireContractor
GardenOffice Staff
Off-site VisitTrip Leader

Competency for Tasks

Induction Training is the responsibility of:

Designated Safeguarding Lead

First Aid and Accidents

The First Aiders are:

Nicki FOster, Corey Bulmer, Amar Panesar, Debbie Brook, Stefanie Smith, Ruby Foster, and Ali Maulidi

First Aid Boxes can be found at:

Reception Office: Main First Aid Box and Outings First Aid Box. Quiet/First Aid Room

The Accident Book can be found at:

Reception Office

The person responsible for RIDDOR notifications are:

Business Manager

Fire

Escape routes and exits are checked by:

Office Staff

Alarms are tested weekly by:

Office Staff

Fire drills are organised termly by:

Office Staff

Off-Site Visits

The person responsible for co-ordinating off-site visits is:

Visit Organiser

Work Experience

The person(s) responsible for co-ordinating pupils on Work Experience is:

Class teacher in conjunction with office staff

ARRANGEMENTS

Accident, Incident and Ill-Health Recording, Reporting and Investigation

This policy sets out the procedures that are to be followed when any employee, pupil, visitor, volunteer, or contractor has an accident, near miss or dangerous occurrence on the school’s premises.

Employees who develop a work-related illness must also report via these procedures.

Definitions:

An accident is an unplanned event that causes injury to persons, damage to property or a combination of both.

near miss is an unplanned event that does not cause injury or damage but could do so.

work-related illness is illness that is contracted by an employee through the course of work as a result of activities carried out by the school.

The Accident Book

All accidents resulting in personal injury must be recorded on an Accident Report Form (in the Accident Book).

Completed Accident Report Forms will be stored to comply with the requirements of the Data Protection Act.

Completed Accident Report Forms will be reviewed regularly by the Principal and Business Manager to ascertain the nature of incidents that have occurred in the school. This review will be in addition to any investigation of the circumstances surrounding each incident.

All near misses must also be reported to Principal as soon as possible so that action can be taken to investigate the causes and to prevent recurrence.

Employees must ensure that they are aware of the location of the accident book.

Reporting Requirements

Certain accidents causing injury, both fatal and non-fatal, certain occupational diseases and certain dangerous occurrences are reportable to the Enforcing Authority under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR).

Specified injuries including the following reportable events must be reported by the quickest means practicable, usually the telephone:

  • Death
  • A specified injury to an employee as detailed in regulation 4
  • An injury to a non-employee where that person is taken directly to hospital for treatment as a result of their injury
  • Any dangerous occurrence
  • Any employee diagnosed by a qualified medical practitioner as suffering from a disease specified in the Regulations
  • Any employee diagnosed with a cancer caused by work-related exposure to a known carcinogen or mutagen.

Incapacitation for work of a person for more than 7 consecutive days as a result of an injury caused by an accident at work must be notified within 15 working days.

To calculate whether the absence classifies as ‘over 7-day’:

  • exclude the day of the incident if they went home or did not return to work on the day
  • include weekends, bank holidays and weekdays (whether the person would normally work on them or not).

Example: If a person has an accident on Friday and comes back to work the following Friday, then count Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday etc but this is still only 6 days; however, if their next day of work is the Monday it would count as 9 days and would be reportable.

Non-Consensual Violence

Major or over 7-day injuries to people at work arising from non-consensual violence are notifiable.

Reporting of accidents involving Pupils or visitors

If a pupil or visitor has an accident this must be reported if:

  • the person involved is killed or taken to hospital and:-
  • the accident arises out of or in connection with a work activity

Examples of ‘in connection with a work activity’ are:

  • work organisation – supervision of a field trip
  • plant or substances – lifts, machinery, experiments
  • condition of premises, or garden
  • sports activities as part of the curriculum where there is death or hospitalisation
  • playground accidents due the condition of the premises or inadequate supervision.

Contact details for the Health and Safety Executive are:

Tel: 0345 300 9923 (Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm)

Website: www.hse.gov.uk

The completed report form should be kept with other accident records and documents on the accident investigation.

Forms are kept to advise the insurers of a potential claim and to present to the Enforcing Authority in the event of an investigation.

Records are to be kept for 3 years from the date of the incident.

Investigation

All injury related accidents that are either notified to the Enforcing Authority or where a serious injury has occurred will be investigated:

  • to ensure that all necessary information in respect of the accident or incident is collated
  • to understand the sequence of events that led to the accident or incident
  • to identify the unsafe acts and conditions that contributed to the cause of the accident or incident
  • to identify the underlying causes that may have contributed to the accident or incident
  • to ensure that effective remedial actions are taken to prevent any recurrence
  • to enable a full and comprehensive report of the accident or incident to be prepared and circulated to all interested parties
  • to enable all statutory requirements to be adhered to.

The investigation will include obtaining signed witness statements, photographs and drawings as appropriate.

Asbestos

The school will protect employees, pupils and other persons potentially exposed to asbestos as far as is reasonably practicable. Everyone who needs to know about the presence of asbestos will be alerted. No one will be allowed to start any work that could disturb asbestos unless the correct procedures are to be employed.

This will be achieved by minimising exposure through the management of asbestos-containing materials in school premises by the following arrangements.

Assessment

The premises will be surveyed to determine whether asbestos-containing materials are present. It will be presumed that materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence to the contrary.

The amount and condition of the asbestos-containing material will be assessed, and measures will be identified to ensure that airborne asbestos fibres are not present or formed in the workplace.

A Written Plan

A written plan or register that sets out the location of any asbestos-containing material and how the risk from this material will be managed, will be prepared and steps will be taken to put the plan into action. The plan or register will be made available, and the arrangements will be reviewed at regular intervals or when there has been a significant change to the organisation or personnel.

Access to Asbestos-containing Materials

Access to any asbestos-containing materials in the premises will be controlled to prevent inadvertent disturbance of the material and the release of asbestos fibres. Procedures will be put in place to ensure that anyone liable to disturb asbestos-containing materials is made aware of their location.

Monitoring and Maintenance

The condition of all asbestos-containing materials or materials suspected of containing asbestos will be inspected at agreed intervals to ascertain that there has been no damage or deterioration. Where damage or deterioration is found the asbestos-containing material will be reassessed and repaired, or removed as appropriate.

Training and Information

Employees who may encounter asbestos containing materials (ACM’s) through the course of their work will receive adequate training and information such that they can recognise potential ACM’s and know what precautions to take.

Asbestos-related Emergencies

Procedures to deal with asbestos-related incidents will be put in place (including the provision of information and warning systems) unless there is only a slight risk to the health of employees, students, and others

Arrangements for Controlling Work on Asbestos

Any work on, or removal of, asbestos-containing materials will be controlled to ensure that adequate precautions are taken to prevent the release of asbestos fibres.

Work with asbestos and asbestos-containing materials is to be carried out by a licensed contractor (licensed by the HSE) unless the work is exempted from the requirement for licensing.

Selection and Control of Contractors to Work on Asbestos-containing Materials

When contractors are engaged to work on school premises, adequate steps will be taken to ensure the contractors are competent and have sufficient skills and knowledge to do the job safely and without risks to health.

Only contractors licensed by the HSE will be used for the removal of asbestos-containing materials, unless the work involves the removal of materials in which:

  • asbestos fibres are firmly linked in a matrix
  • the exposure during the removal process is likely to be sporadic or of low intensity

Contractors hired to carry out building or allied trade work that will involve minor work with asbestos must comply with the Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012.

Procedures for Dealing with Health and Safety Issues

Where an employee raises a health and safety problem related to work with asbestos, the school will:

  • take all necessary steps to investigate the circumstances
  • take corrective measures where appropriate
  • advise the employee of actions taken.

Where a problem arises relating to the condition of, or during work on, asbestos-containing material, the employee must inform the Principal and in the case of an accident or emergency, respond quickly to ensure effective treatment.

Communication and Consultation

It is a legal requirement for the school to establish arrangements to communicate and consult with staff on issues affecting their health and safety and to take account of their views.

To achieve this objective, we will:

  • establish effective lines of communication
  • involve and consult with staff through:
  • individual conversations
  • internal publications
  • staff meetings
  • display the ‘Health and Safety Law – What You Need To Know’ poster
  • consult with staff when changes to processes, equipment, work methods etc. are to be introduced that may affect their health and safety.

Contractors

When working on school premises it is considered that contractors are joint occupiers for that period and therefore, we have both joint liabilities in “common areas”. To meet our legal obligations with regard to contractors we will ensure that prior to engaging any contractor they are competent and that any works are carried out safely.

The following factors will be considered as part of our procedures for vetting contractors:

  • sight of the contractor’s own safety policy, risk assessments, method statements, permits to work, etc as applicable
  • clarification of the responsibility for provision of first aid and fire extinguishing equipment, where applicable
  • details of articles and hazardous substances intended to be brought to site, including any arrangements for safe transportation, handling, use, storage, and disposal
  • details of plant and equipment to be brought onto site, including arrangements for storage, use, maintenance, and inspection
  • clarification for supervision and regular communication during work including arrangements for reporting problems or stopping work in cases where there is a serious risk of personal injury
  • confirmation that all workers are suitably qualified and competent for the work (including a requirement for sight of evidence where relevant)
  • evidence showing that appropriate Employers and Public Liability Insurance is in place

Clearly, it will not be necessary to go to such elaborate lengths if the contract is very short and will not create hazards of any significance. The complexity of the arrangements will be directly proportional to the risks and consequences of failure.

Similarly, we have a parallel duty to the contractor and must ensure that the contractor is not put at risk by our own activities for the duration of the contract.

We will stop contractors working immediately if their work appears unsafe. Staff should report any concerns to the Principal immediately.

Construction work and the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015

Where any construction work is carried out, to fulfil our legal duties as a “client” under the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 we will:

  • make suitable arrangements for the management of the project and review those arrangements throughout the project to ensure that they are still relevant
  • ensure that all duty holders that we appoint have the necessary skills, knowledge, and experience to carry out their roles safely
  • notify the HSE in writing for projects that require it
  • ensure that adequate welfare facilities are provided for the contractors
  • ensure that no construction commences until an adequate health and safety plan and construction phase plan covering the work has been prepared
  • ensure that any health and safety file passed to us is kept securely and readily available for inspection by anyone who requires it to fulfil their legal duties
  • cooperate fully with all other duty holders and provide all relevant information and instruction promptly and clearly.

Disabled Persons including Pupils with Additional Needs and Disabilities

The school will give full and proper consideration to the needs of disabled employees, pupils and visitors.

To achieve this, the school will:

  • treat all disabled employees, pupils, volunteers and visitors with respect and dignity, both in the provision of a safe working environment and in equal access to the schools’ facilities
  • ensure that risk assessments are undertaken of the needs of the disabled person and carry out reasonable adjustments to the premises and/or employment arrangements
  • encourage employees with special needs to suggest any premises or task improvements to their line managers
  • discipline any employees found treating their disabled colleagues with less than the expected standards of respect and dignity
  • in an emergency evacuation, ensure suitable plans are in place which will assist disabled people to leave the premises swiftly.

Risk assessment of pupils with Additional Needs or disabilities will consider:

  • manual handling of pupils with physical disabilities
  • pupils unable to recognise everyday hazards, communicate distress, or move around independently
  • using mechanical aids and equipment
  • administering medical treatment and minimising the risk of infection
  • management of difficult behaviour and the use of restraint
  • lone working where an employee works on a one-to-one basis with a pupil with additional needs or disabilities

When to assess

So far as is reasonably practicable risk assessments of the pupils with special education needs will be made:

  • before pupils are admitted – this is a planning ahead exercise
  • when planning educational activities both on and off site
  • when planning and purchasing new facilities and when work practices are to be introduced or changed
  • when deciding on a placement
  • when an existing pupil develops a health need, e.g., after an operation, or where a significant change in their existing needs occurs
  • when a pupil is to undertake work experiences

Display Screen Equipment

All reasonable steps will be taken by the school to secure the health and safety of employees and pupils who work with display screen equipment.

To achieve this objective the school will:

  • identify those employees who are ‘users’ as defined by the regulations, see below
  • implement necessary measures to remedy any risks found as a result of the assessment
  • provide adequate information and training to persons working with display screen equipment
  • endeavour to incorporate changes of task within the working day, to prevent intensive periods of on-screen activity
  • review software to ensure that it is suitable for the task and is not unnecessarily complicated
  • arrange for the provision of free eye tests when requested, at regular intervals thereafter and where a visual problem is identified
  • arrange for the supply, at subsidised cost, any corrective appliances (glasses or contact lenses) where these are specifically for working with display screen equipment
  • advise existing employees, and all persons applying for work with display screen equipment, of the risks to health and how these are to be avoided
  • investigate any discomfort or ill-health believed to be associated with the use of display screen equipment and take appropriate remedial action
  • make special arrangements for individuals with health conditions that could be adversely affected by working with display screen equipment.

Users’

This policy is aimed at those who regularly use DSE:

  1. for continuous periods of more than one hour and
  2. for more than 2½ hours per day.

Typically, this will therefore apply to administrative functions, the teaching of computer skills and other prolonged users.

Others who operate DSE, including pupils, should have a workstation which meets the standards set down in the regulations but are not entitled to financial contributions.

Employees must:

  • comply with the instructions and training given regarding safe workstation set-up and use, including the need for regular changes of activity or breaks and the use of the equipment provided
  • inform their manager of any disability or health condition which may affect their ability to work using display screen equipment or be affected by working with DSE (this information will be treated confidentially)
  • report to their manager any discomfort or health concern believed to be associated with the use of DSE (this information will be treated confidentially).

Eye tests

Under the DSE regulations staff identified as DSE users are entitled to an eyesight test, every 2 years by a qualified optician (and corrective glasses if required specifically by the Optician for DSE use).

Summary of Key Actions

The key actions necessary to control the health and safety risks arising from the use of Display Screen Equipment (DSE) are to:

  • identify all individuals who are classified as DSE ‘Users’
  • ensure risk assessments of DSE workstations been carried out using the Display Screen Equipment Workstation Assessment Form
  • supply users with information and/or training on the safe use of Display Screen Equipment
  • advise staff about setting up laptops on a suitable surface and the risks of working for prolonged periods
  • ensure remedial actions identified by DSE risk assessments been carried out
  • review risk assessments annually or sooner if significant changes have occurred.

Drugs and Alcohol

Alcohol

Staff must not drink alcohol on school premises without express permission from the Principal.

Any member of staff who is found consuming alcohol on school premises without permission or is found to be intoxicated at work will normally face disciplinary action on the ground of gross misconduct under the school’s disciplinary procedure.

Drugs and medication

The possession, use or distribution of drugs for non-medical purposes on school premises is strictly forbidden and a gross misconduct offence.

If you are prescribed drugs by your doctor which may affect your ability to perform your work, you should discuss the problem with the Principal.

If the school suspects there has been a breach of this policy or your work performance or conduct has been impaired through substance abuse, the school reserves the right to require you to undergo a medical examination to determine the cause of the problem.

Medical Examination

Existing and prospective members of staff may be asked to undergo a medical examination, which will seek to determine whether he/she has taken a controlled drug or has an alcohol abuse problem.

A refusal to give consent to such an examination or a refusal to undergo the screening will result in the immediate withdrawal of any offer made to prospective staff and will normally be treated as gross misconduct for current members of staff.

If, having undergone a medical examination, it is confirmed that you have been positively tested for a controlled drug, or you admit there is a problem, the school reserves the right to suspend you from your employment (with or without pay) to allow the school to decide whether to deal with the matter under the terms of the school’s disciplinary procedure and/or to require you to undergo treatment and rehabilitation.

Reasonable Grounds

The school reserves the right to search you or any of your property held on school premises at any time if there are reasonable grounds to believe that this policy is being or has been infringed or for any other reason. If you refuse to comply with these search procedures, your refusal will normally be treated as gross misconduct.

The school reserves the right to inform the police of any suspicions it may have with regard to the use of controlled drugs by its employees on school’s premises.

Educational Visits

The school policy is to ensure that the safety of pupils, employees and others is managed to minimise risk as far as practicable and in developing its procedures is guided by the guidance and procedures issued by the Department for Education and the Outdoor Education Advisers Panel’s Guidance for the Management of Outdoor Learning, Off-site visits and Learning Outside the Classroom.

To achieve its objective to ensure safety the school will ensure that:

  • all visits are approved by the Principal
  • a person is nominated to coordinate educational visits
  • group leaders are experienced to lead a visit
  • all visits are planned
  • risk assessments are completed, where appropriate
  • all employees are briefed prior to each visit
  • emergency arrangements are established for all visits
  • the ratio of adults to pupils is appropriate and proportionate to the needs of the visit
  • adequate insurance is in place
  • adequate child protection measures are in place
  • parents are notified of all visits and given the opportunity to withdraw their child from any school trip or activity
  • consent is obtained from parents for all visits
  • arrangements are made for pupils with medical or additional needs
  • adequate first aid is available
  • contingency plans are made
  • safety during visits is monitored and reviewed
  • visits incorporating an activity that will involve caving, climbing, trekking, skiing or water sports, the provider must hold a licence as required by the Adventure Activities Licensing Regulations 2004.

Staffing of Trips

Ratios:

It is important to have a high enough ratio of adult supervisors to pupils for any visit. The factors to take into consideration include:

sex, age, and ability of group

  • pupils with additional or medical needs
  • nature of activities
  • experience of adults in off-site supervision
  • duration and nature of journey
  • type of any accommodation
  • competence of staff, both general and on specific activities
  • requirements of the organisation/location to be visited
  • competence and behaviour of pupils
  • first aid cover.

Ratios of staff to pupils for low-risk activities are:

  • Years 7 + 1 Teacher for every 15 – 20 pupils for visits in the UK

Teacher to every 10 pupils for visits outside the UK or for more hazardous activities

Without special safeguards or control measures, these ratios will not be adequate to meet the needs of most residential or more complex visits. The ratios stated are the minimum acceptable.

Except in special circumstances and with the agreement of the Principal, there must always be a minimum of 2 staff members with any visit. For certain visits a higher ratio will be appropriate because the leader of the visits must ensure that there is always a safe level of supervision.

If an adult who is not a member of staff is accompanying the trip, then they must have an up to date and valid DBS check, authorised by the HR department.

No member of staff can be included in the staffing ratios if they are accompanied by their own child who is a minor (under 16).

Emergency Procedures

School staff should not hesitate to act in an emergency and to take lifesaving action in an extreme situation.

Emergency procedures are an essential part of planning a school visit. If an emergency happens the priorities are to:

  • assess the situation
  • safeguard the uninjured members of the group
  • attend to any casualty
  • inform the emergency services and everyone who needs to know of the incident.

Guidance on Emergency Procedures

A copy of the following guidelines must be taken by all trip leaders:

  • establish nature and extent of the emergency
  • make sure that all other members of the party are accounted for and safe
  • if there are injuries, establish their extent and arrange for first aid
  • establish names of the injured and call relevant emergency services
  • advise other party staff of the incident and that emergency procedures are in operation
  • ensure that an adult from the party accompanies casualties to hospital
  • ensure that the remainder of the party is adequately supervised throughout and arrange for their early return to school
  • arrange for one adult to remain at the incident site to liaise with emergency services until the incident is over and all children are accounted for
  • control access to telephones until contact is made with the Principal and until they have had time to contact those directly involved. Pass full details of the incident (name, nature, date and time of incident, location of incident, details of injuries, names, and telephone numbers of those involved, action taken so far)
  • telephone numbers for future communication (identify alternative telephone numbers in case telephone lines become jammed)
  • the school will arrange to contact the parents of those involved. In the event of serious incidents, the parents of all party members should be informed
  • all accident forms should be completed and insurers and the HSE should be contacted
  • inform parents of any delays that will be necessitated
  • the Party Leader should write down as soon as practicable all relevant details. A record should be made of any witnesses. Any associated equipment should be kept in its original condition.

Media:

In the event of an emergency:

  • a designated person should act as the point of contact with the media to whom all involved should direct questions
  • under no circumstances should the name of any casualty be divulged to the media
  • legal liability should not be discussed or admitted.

After the Trip

The trip leader must inform the Principal that the party has returned safely and ensure that all the pupils are safely collected from school by a responsible adult, such as a parent or guardian.

If any difficulties or incidents occur on a school trip, the Principal must be informed as soon as possible after the trip returns to school so that appropriate follow up action can be taken quickly.

Electricity

All reasonable steps will be taken to secure the health and safety of employees, pupils and others who use, operate, or maintain electrical equipment.

To ensure this objective the school will:

  • ensure electrical installations and equipment are installed in accordance with the Wiring Regulations (BS 7671) published by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
  • maintain the fixed wiring installation in a safe condition by carrying out routine safety tests
  • inspect and test portable and transportable equipment as often as required to ensure safety
  • inspect and test second-hand electrical equipment lent to, or borrowed by the school

promote and implement a safe system of work for maintenance, inspection, and testing

  • forbid live working unless absolutely necessary, in which case a permit to work system must be used
  • ensure employees and contractors who carry out electrical work are competent to do so
  • maintain detailed records.

Employees must:

  • visually check electrical equipment for damage before use
  • report any defects found to their line manager. However, if there is any doubt whether the equipment is safe then it should be labelled ‘out of use’ and withdrawn until it has been tested and declared fit for use by a qualified person
  • not use defective electrical equipment
  • not carry out any repair to any electrical item unless qualified to do so
  • switch off non-essential equipment from the mains when left unattended for long periods
  • not bring any electrical item onto school premises until it has been tested and a record of such a test has been included in the appropriate record
  • not leave electric cables in such a position that they will cause a tripping hazard or be subject to mechanical damage
  • never run extension leads under carpets or through doorways
  • not daisy-chain extension leads to make a longer one
  • not use adapter sockets – devices that plug into mains sockets to increase the number of outlets.

Summary of Key Actions

The key actions necessary to control the health and safety risks arising from electricity are as follows:

  • The main electrical installation should be tested every five years except for those parts of schools with:
    1. licensed areas
    2. lightning protection which should be tested annually
  • Retain copies of electrical test certificates
  • A record must be kept of all portable items of electrical equipment showing:
    1. the detail of the item
    2. the date of acquisition
    3. details of any inspection, testing, or repair work

• arrange for the inspection and testing of portable electrical.

Fire

All reasonable steps will be taken to prevent a fire occurring. In the event of a fire, the safety of life will override all other considerations, such as saving property and extinguishing the fire.

To prevent fire and to minimise the likelihood of injury in the event of a fire the school will:

  • assess the risk from fire at our premises and implement appropriate control measures
  • ensure good housekeeping standards are maintained to minimise the risk of fire
  • provide and maintain safe means of escape from the premises
  • develop a fire evacuation procedure for all buildings
  • provide and maintain appropriate fire-fighting equipment
  • regularly stage fire evacuation drills, inspect the means of escape, and rest and inspect fire-fighting equipment, emergency lighting and any fire warning systems
  • provide adequate fire safety training to employees, plus specialist training to those with special responsibilities
  • make arrangements for the safe evacuation of deaf or otherwise disabled persons
  • make arrangements for ensuring all pupils and visitors are made aware of the fire evacuation procedures
  • display fire action notices
  • keep fire safety records.

The school does not require persons to attempt to extinguish a fire but extinguishing action may be taken if it is safe to do so.

Immediate evacuation of the building must take place as soon as the evacuate signal is given. All occupants, on evacuation, should report to the pre-determined assembly points.

Re-entry of the building is strictly prohibited until the fire brigade officer, or a senior person present declares it is safe to do so.

Employees are encouraged to report any concerns regarding fire procedures so the school can investigate and take remedial action if necessary.

Summary of Key Actions

The key actions required to ensure fire safety is effectively managed are:

  1. complete and review annually a fire risk assessment
  2. arrange for fire safety checks to be completed and recorded for the following:
  • fire evacuations (drills)
  • fire alarm tests
  • fire escape route checks
  • extinguisher checks
  • post-fire evacuation notices
  1. develop personal evacuation plans (PEEP) for anyone requiring one
  2. provide fire safety training
  3. service the fire alarm

FIRE MAINTENANCE TEST PROCEDURES

FIRE DRILLS
TERMLYFire Evacuations must be carried out at least once in each term.Ensure all occupants are to a place of safety in a reasonable time (5 minutes)Record details of drill, evacuation time and any problems.
FIRE ALARM SYSTEM
DAILYCheck the fire alarm system for normal working conditionReport any faults and actions
WEEKLYFire alarm audibility test.Check alarm is audible in all areas (test to be carried out during full occupation)Record details of test. Repair/replace where necessary
ANNUALLYFor systems without battery back-up an annual battery check by a competent service engineer is requires.This check may also include 50% of the automatic smoke/heat detectors, sounders and manually operated devices.Site to keep maintenance records
ANNUALLYFor 230-volt systems without battery back upAn annual test and examination of the alarm system by a competent service engineer is required.Test and examination of alarm system by competent service engineer including all automatic/heat detectors, sounders and manually operated devices.Site to keep maintenance records
MEANS OF ESCAPE
DAILYCheck for any obstructions on escape routes (internally and externally)Doors: check self-closing devices, and that push bars/other emergency fastening devices are operationalSite to record details and actions only if there is a fault
WEEKLYCheck all internal doors for ease of opening, that they are a good fit, closing fully, fire door seals and self-closures working correctly, correctly signed etc.Site to record details and actions only if there is a fault
MONTHLYCheck all electronic release mechanisms (if applicable)on escape doors work correctly (i.e., fail safe in the open position on activation of alarm/loss of power)Site to record details and actions only if there is a fault
FIRE FIGHTING EQUIPMENT
WEEKLYCheck all extinguishers, fire blankets, etc., are available for use undamaged and unobstructed.Extinguishers properly affixed to wall brackets or on plinths.Check for any evidence of tampering.Site to record details and actions only if there is a fault
ANNUALLYFull check and test of extinguishers, fire blankets etc., by competent service engineer.Site to record details and actions only if there is a fault
FIXED SYSTEMS(Where applicable)e.g. Sprinkler Systems
Frequency specified by installerProgramme of inspections and checks dependant on type of system and to be specified by installer.E.g., weekly checks on water and air pressure gauge readings, water levels in storage tanks. Weekly test on automatic pump etc., where applicableSite to record details and actions only if there is a fault
ANNUALY(or to insurance/installers guidelines)Formal inspection and testing of fore sprinkler systemMaintenance records to be kept on site
EMERGENCY LIGHTING(Where applicable)
DAILYCheck indicator lights functioning (report faults to contractor)Operate and replace batters in torches if necessarySite to record details and actions only if there is a fault
MONTHLYIn house operational test for a short period (a maximum of one quarter of the rated duration.)Maintenance records to be kept on site
ANNUALLYEmergency lighting full duration discharge test by competent person.Maintenance records to be kept on site

Fire Safety Training in the School

The school will provide adequate fire safety training for staff. The type of training should be based on the particular features of the school and should:

  • take account of the findings of the fire risk assessment
  • explain the emergency procedure
  • take account of the work activity and explain the duties and responsibilities of staff
  • take place during normal working hours and be repeated periodically where appropriate
  • be easily understandable
  • be tested by fire drills.

Pupils will also be involved in some aspects of fire safety training, particularly with respect to fire drills, etc.

Fire training should include the following:

  • what to do on discovering a fire
  • how to raise the alarm and what happens then
  • what to do upon hearing the fire alarm
  • the procedures for alerting pupils, members of the public and visitors including, where appropriate, directing them to exits
  • the arrangements for calling the fire and rescue service
  • the evacuation procedures for everyone in your premises (including young children or mobility impaired persons) to reach an assembly point at a place of total safety
  • the location and, when appropriate, the use of firefighting equipment
  • the location of escape routes, especially those not in regular use
  • how to open all emergency exit doors
  • the importance of keeping fire doors closed to prevent the spread of fire, heat, and smoke
  • where appropriate, how to stop machines and processes and isolate power supplies in the event of a fire
  • the safe use of and risks from storing or working with highly flammable and explosive substances
  • the importance of general fire safety, which includes good housekeeping; and

All staff identified in the emergency plan that have a supervisory role if there is a fire, should be given details of the fire risk assessment and receive additional training, where appropriate.

In addition to the guidance above as a minimum all staff should receive training about:

  • the importance of fire doors and other basic fire-prevention measures
  • where relevant, the appropriate use of firefighting equipment
  • the importance of reporting to the assembly area
  • exit routes and the operation of exit devices, including physically walking these routes
  • assisting disabled persons where necessary.

Training is necessary:

  • when staff start employment or are transferred into the premises
  • where working practices and processes or people’s responsibilities change
  • to take account of any changed risks to the safety of staff, pupils or other relevant persons to ensure that staff know what they have to do to safeguard themselves and others on the premises; and where staff are expected to assist disabled persons.

Training should be repeated as often as necessary and should take place during working hours.

Enforcing authorities will want to examine records as evidence that adequate training has been given.

Training of Pupils

It is good practice to provide pupils and pupils with some form of fire safety training so that they are aware of the actions to be taken in the event of a fire. This should include instruction on the:

  • details of the evacuation plan
  • importance of fire doors and other basic fire-prevention measures
  • importance of reporting to the assembly area
  • exit routes and the operation of exit devices

First Aid

The school is committed to providing sufficient provision for first aid to deal with injuries that arise at work or as a consequence of school activities.

To achieve this objective the school will:

  1. appoint and train a suitable number of first aid personnel
  2. display first aid notices with details of first aid provision
  3. provide and maintain suitable and sufficient first aid facilities including first aid boxes
  4. provide any additional first aid training that may be required to deal with specific first aid hazards.

First Aiders

A First Aider is a person who has a valid certificate in either first aid at work or emergency first aid at work training.

First Aiders training will be refreshed every three years by undertaking the two-day First Aid at Work requalification. (This may be taken up to 3 months before / 28 days after the expiry date on the certificate).

First aid personnel will be provided with refresher training at regular intervals to keep their skills up to date.

The number of first aiders required will be determined by completing a risk assessment. The HSE provide some general guidance on the number of first aiders required and expected provision is illustrated below:

CATEGORY OF RISKNUMBERS EMPLOYEDAT LOCATIONSUGGESTED NUMBER OF FIRST AIDPERSONNEL
Lower Hazard(most schools fall into this category)<25At least one Appointed Person –It is recommended that they receive Emergency First Aid at Work Training(EFAW)
25 – 50At least one First Aider trained EFAW
>50At least one First Aider trained in First Aid at work (FAW) for every 100 employed (or part thereof)
Higher Hazard<5At least one Appointed Person –It is recommended that they receive Emergency First Aid at Work Training(EFAW)
5-50At least one First Aider trained EFAW or FAW
>50At least one First Aider trained in First Aid at work (FAW) for every 100 employed (or part thereof)

The number of first aid personnel will be determined by individual circumstances, the level of risk and in line with government guidance,

Additional First Aid Provision

In addition to the above in higher risk areas at least one person will be trained to a minimum level of emergency first aid.

Adequate first aid provision will include cover for break times.

First aid provision will be always available whilst people are present on school premises. The assessment of need will be reviewed at least annually.

First Aid Boxes

First aid kits, clearly marked, will be available in readily accessible locations and be made known to all staff and pupils.

Additional first aid boxes will be provided for offsite visits.

First aid boxes will contain a sufficient quantity of suitable first aid materials and nothing else.

First aid does not include the administration of medicines and thus first aid boxes should NOT contain drugs of any kind including aspirin, paracetamol, antiseptic creams etc.

First aid boxes should be located near to hand washing facilities as far as possible.

All first aid boxes will be checked regularly and maintained by a designated member of staff. Items should not be used after expiry date shown on packaging. Extra stock will be kept in the school.

Suitable protective clothing and equipment such as disposable gloves (e.g. vinyl or powder free, low protein latex CE marked) and aprons will be provided.

Small quantities of contaminated waste (soiled or used first aid dressings) can be safely disposed of via the usual refuse collection arrangements. Waste should be double bagged in plastic and sealed by knotting.

First Aid Information

Notices are posted in conspicuous positions within a school, giving the location of first aid equipment.

New and temporary employees are to be told of the location of first-aid equipment and first aid personnel, and facilities on the first day they join the school as part of the induction training.

First Aid Records

The school ensures that the following records are available:

  • certification of training for all first aiders and refresher periods
  • any specialised instruction received by first aiders or staff (e.g., Epi-pens)
  • first aid cases treated (see accident / incident reporting).

Please see First Aid policy for further information on First Aid.

Gas Installations and Appliances

The school will ensure that all work carried out on gas fittings and appliances are in accordance with the requirements of the regulations and the Safety in the Installation and Use of Gas Systems and Appliances Manual.

Maintenance of Gas Equipment

Gas boilers, heaters, ovens, and other gas fired equipment will be serviced at regular intervals, usually annually, and in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.

All work on gas appliances to be carried out by a Gas Safe Registered engineer.

Records of all servicing, maintenance, and repairs to be kept.

Summary of Key Actions

The key actions necessary to ensure the safety of gas fired appliances are:

  • identify all gas fired appliances and create a maintenance schedule for each
  • arrange for servicing in line with the schedule and keep records
  • highlight all gas shut-off points.

Gas Emergencies

In the event of a suspected gas leak:

  • Call 24-hour gas emergency service on 0800 111 999
  • Evacuate the buildings and move the pupils and majority of the staff to a distance of at least 250 metres away. Nominate some staff to stay at a safe distance to prevent access to the site and await the emergency National Grid Engineer
  • If it is safe to do so:
  • Put out naked flames
  • Open doors and windows
  • Turn off the gas supply.

DO NOT TURN ELECTRICAL SWITCHES ON OR OFF

If the general public in the neighbourhood are at risk, contact the police on 999.

No person shall interfere with any gas appliance or gas fitting or pipe work unless qualified and competent to do so.

Hazardous Substances (COSHH)

All reasonable steps will be taken to ensure all exposure of employees and pupils to substances hazardous to health is prevented or at least controlled to within statutory limits.

The school will implement the following:

  • an inventory of all substances hazardous to health kept or present on site will be maintained and copies of relevant hazard data sheets retained
  • competent persons will be appointed to carry out risk assessments of the exposure to substances hazardous to health and advise on their control
  • all operations which involve, or may involve, exposure to substances hazardous to health will be assessed and appropriate control measures will be taken if elimination or substitution of the substance is not possible
  • engineering controls will be properly maintained by planned preventive maintenance and annual performance monitoring to ensure continued effectiveness
  • systems of work will be reviewed at suitable intervals and revised if necessary
  • all members of staff and others who may work in the affected areas will be informed of the purpose and safe operation of all engineering controls
  • personal protective equipment (PPE) will only be used as a last resort or as a back-up measure during testing or modification of other controls
  • the type and use of PPE will be carefully assessed and maintained according to manufacturers’ instructions
  • assessments will be reviewed periodically or if changes to the operation or any hazardous substances used
  • qualified professionals, where necessary, will carry out health surveillance
  • employee health records of all exposures to substances hazardous to health will be kept for a minimum of 40 years
  • all staff and (where necessary) pupils will be provided with understandable information and appropriate training on the nature of the hazardous substances they work with. Staff will be informed about any monitoring and health surveillance results

All changes to control measures and changes of PPE will be properly assessed and no new substances will be introduced into the school without prior assessment.

Substances Hazardous to Health

Substances hazardous to health as defined by the COSHH regulations are:

  1. substances classified as toxic, corrosive, a health hazard, a serious health hazard, flammable, oxidising, explosive, harmful to the environment or gases under pressure. These can be identified by their warning label and carry the pictograms detailed below
  2. Biological agents directly connected with work including micro-organisms
  3. Dust of any kind when present as a substantial concentration in the air
  4. Substances which have a Workplace Exposure Limit (WEL) assigned to them by the Health and Safety Commission document EH40
  5. Any other substance not specified above which may create a comparable hazard to a person’s health

Principles of Control

Exposure to substances hazardous to health should either be prevented altogether, substituted with a less harmful substance, or (where it is not reasonably practicable) adequately controlled.

In all cases personal protective equipment (PPE) should only be used where it is not reasonably practicable to adequately control exposure by other means. For example, fume cupboards in science labs and local exhaust ventilation systems on woodworking machinery should always take precedence over masks.

If a substance is hazardous by inhalation, it is likely to have been assigned a “workplace exposure limit” (WEL). This should be used to assess the level of control.

Where PPE is identified as necessary for use by staff and pupils it should be ensured it is suitable for the purpose.

Employees have a duty to make full and proper use of all control measures identified as required in the risk assessment and must wear appropriate PPE (lab coat, eye protection, gloves etc.) where this is identified as required. Adequate information and training must be provided on its use and maintenance.

Maintenance, Examination and Testing

Where controls such as fume cupboards, dust extraction for wood working equipment etc are provided it is necessary to ensure that they are properly maintained. This will require visual and operational checks pre use in addition to a thorough examination and tests of engineering controls.

In the case of local exhaust ventilation, tests for fume cupboards, woodworking extraction etc. should be carried out at least every fourteen months. A record of the results of all examinations must be kept for at least 5 years.

All PPE must be kept clean, in good repair and stored correctly to prevent contamination.

Health Surveillance

Health surveillance is typically only required in certain circumstances and is dependent on individual circumstances. Where there is a reasonable likelihood that an identifiable disease or adverse health effect associated with exposure will occur and the risk assessment shows that health surveillance is appropriate for the protection of employees these should be carried out.

Monitoring and health surveillance records relating to named individuals must be kept for 40 years.

Information, Instruction and Training

Information, instruction, and training must be given to employees and pupils who may be exposed, about the risks to health and precautions.

Infection Control

School staff and pupils are from time to time at risk of infection or of spreading infection.

The school aims to minimise the risk of the spread of infection and will:

  • provide employees with information on potential infections and symptoms measures to assist with early identification and prompt implementation of control measures
  • inform and take advice from the local Consultant in Local Disease Control (CCDC) and the Environmental Health Department of the Local Authority if an increase in illness is noted in school, or if they have any concerns about infectious disease issues
  • maintain up-to-date emergency contact numbers for all pupils, not only so that parents can be contacted if children are ill and need to be taken home, but also to assist in the investigation of any outbreaks
  • maintain high standards of hygiene throughout the school including the promotion of good hand washing
  • provide warm water, liquid soap and disposable towels in all toilets and cloakrooms
  • undertake risk assessments to include the infection control risk and identify control measures associated with farm or other similar visits
  • ensure spillages of bodily fluids (blood, urine, vomit and faeces) are dealt with immediately and that adequate facilities are provided to provide protection to people involved
  • organise for the safe cleaning of equipment and where appropriate disinfection and thorough, cleaning of the premises
  • arrange for safe disposal of any infected materials.

Further Information

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) provides details on recommended exclusion periods for the more common communicable diseases in Guidance on Infection Control in Schools.

Factsheets on infectious diseases are available from the Health Protection Agency http://www.hpa.org.uk/Publications/InfectiousDiseases/Factsheets/.

Staff Illness and Reporting Staff should notify their manager if they develop any of the following infectious diseases or symptoms:

  • skin infections or exposed areas of infestation
  • severe respiratory infection (e.g., pneumonia, TB)
  • severe diarrhoea
  • jaundice
  • hepatitis
  • Chicken Pox, Measles, Mumps, Rubella
  • norovirus
  • gastroenteritis
  • HIV
  • Weil’s Disease.

Individual suitable controls will need to be applied dependant on the circumstances of each case. In some instances, employees may need to be referred to their GP for advice.

Staff should report diseases including Leptospirosis, Hepatitis, TB, and Tetanus which have been contracted through work as these are reportable under RIDDOR (Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations).

Confidentiality

Confidentiality will always be maintained in relation to an employee who is known to have any infectious disease.

No health information will be disclosed without the written consent of the employee concerned and any breach of such confidentiality, either inside or outside the school, will be regarded as a disciplinary offence and may result in disciplinary action.

Legionnaires Disease

All reasonable steps will be taken to identify potential legionellosis hazards and to prevent or minimise the risk of exposure.

The school will:

  • carry out a Legionellosis Risk Assessment
  • keep records for a minimum of 5 years.

Day to day responsibility for monitoring and ensuring that the systems are being correctly operated lies with the Principal.

At risk systems include the hot and cold water storage and distribution system.

To achieve control of legionella bacteria the school will implement the following:

Avoidance of Conditions Favouring Growth of Organisms

As far as practicable, water systems will be operated at temperatures that do not favour the growth of legionella. The recommended temperature for hot water is 60°C and either above 50°C or below 20°C for distribution, as care must be taken to protect people from exposure to very hot water.

The use of materials that may provide nutrients for microbial growth will be avoided.

Corrosion, scale deposition and build-up of bio films and sediments will be controlled, and tanks will be lidded.

Emergency procedures

Emergency procedures will be established for the discovery of Legionella bacteria. If during routine sampling/inspection of hot and cold water systems Legionella bacteria is discovered in any systems likely to provide a medium for the spread of infection (e.g. water aerosol spraying equipment) these will be shut down and the situation reported immediately to the Principal.

Lone Working

This Policy on lone working relates to any individual who spends some or all their working hours working alone without direct supervision and who does not have someone close at hand to assist them in the case of an incident.

Lone working increases the health and safety risks to individuals because they may not be able to summon assistance in the event of an incident and any delay may in receiving attention may increase the consequences of any injury.

People falling into this category may include:

  • anyone working outside normal hours on their own
  • cleaners who normally work outside school hours
  • employees who open or close the building on their own.

It is acceptable for people to work alone so long as the school has completed a risk assessment and any measures deemed necessary have been put into place.

Some activities should not be carried out by people working alone and the school should identify those that are relevant to them, typically this may include:

  • working at height on ladders or tower scaffolds
  • use of high-risk chemicals
  • use of high-risk machinery
  • electrical work
  • entry to areas of restricted or limited access or exit.

Key Actions

  • Identify all workers who work alone
  • Identify all locations where lone working is carried out
  • Complete a risk assessment for all lone working
  • Control measures to be identified, prioritised, and implemented
  • Higher risk activities/area identified, and formal decisions made on authorisation of lone working
  • Formal systems/procedures developed for particular activities/areas as required.

Requirements of lone workers

It is important that lone workers are considered for any known medical conditions which may make them unsuitable for working alone. Consideration should be given to routine work and foreseeable emergencies which may impose additional or specific risks.

Lone workers must be suitably experienced, have suitable instructions and if necessary, training on the risks they are exposed to and the precautions to be used.

The school shall ensure adequate supervision is provided. The adequacy of the supervision will depend on the level of the risk, types, and duration of exposure. Adequacy of supervision may involve some of the following:

  • periodic checks on lone workers i.e., visual
  • periodic contact with lone worker i.e., telephone
  • general or specific alarms for emergencies

Rules for Lone Workers

  • Anyone working alone must have access to a telephone and ensure that a relative or colleague is aware
  • The Principal must be informed of anyone intending to work late and a satisfactory arrangement made for locking up the building
  • When the Principal is not present all lone workers, for reasons of security, health and safety, should lock themselves in the building
  • Staff must not place themselves in danger by challenging intruders or vandals but should call the police for assistance
  • Staff working alone have a responsibility for making themselves familiar with and following the school safety procedures and location of safety equipment
  • If staff rely on mobile phones, they must ensure that their network has good reception within school. Although phones can give extra reassurance, they do not provide complete protection and staff should still be always alert for their own personal safety

Opening/Closing the School

When the last person has left the building and notified the Principal (or other named person), they should then secure the building. This includes the closing of all fire doors and leaving on any emergency and exterior lights.

When the Principal (or other named person) arrives in the morning they must make a quick examination of the exterior of the building to make sure that there are no signs of a break-in or of anyone having been in the building. If in any doubt they should contact the Police and should never enter the building if they are unsure of its’ safety.

Manual Handling

Manual handling means: the transporting or supporting of a load by hand or by bodily force including lifting, putting down, carrying, pushing, or pulling.

A load can include a person or animal as well as inanimate objects but not an implement, tool or equipment while in use for its intended person.

Typical manual handling tasks in school are:

  • moving furniture
  • carrying piles of books or stationery
  • putting out equipment
  • maintenance activities
  • receiving and putting away deliveries.

To prevent injuries and long-term ill-health from manual handling the school will ensure that activities which involve manual handling are eliminated, so far as is reasonably practicable. Where it is not practical the school will carry out an assessment to determine what control measures are required to reduce the risk to an acceptable level.

To implement this policy the school will ensure that:

  • there is no lifting wherever possible and in relation to the handling of pupils with special needs, this policy is intended to promote a safer handling approach, which means no manual lifting of the whole or a substantial part of a person’s body weight
  • manual handling assessments are carried out of activities that:

a) pose a foreseeable risk of injury

b) cannot be avoided

c) cannot be mechanised and consider the risks to pupils and employees.

  • adequate information and training are provided to persons carrying out manual handling activities including details of the approximate weights of loads to be handled and objects with an uneven weight distribution, where appropriate
  • any injuries or incidents relating to manual handling are investigated, with remedial action taken
  • employees are properly supervised
  • where relevant and possible, employees undertaking manual handling activities are suitably screened for reasons of health and safety, before doing the work
  • special arrangements are made for individuals with health conditions which could be adversely affected by manual handling operations

Reducing the risk of injury

In considering the most appropriate controls, an ergonomic approach to designing the manual handling operation will optimise the health, safety and productivity associated with the task.

Techniques of risk reduction may include:

  • redesigning the task
  • reducing risk factors arising from the load
  • improvements in the work environment
  • employee selection.

No employee will be required to lift any item that they do not feel confident of doing without risking personal injury.

Moving and Handling People There are occasions when a pupil with medical needs requires assistance in moving. While the basics outlined above still apply, there are other considerations. When a move is essential and the person requires help, then their co-operation should be sought where possible. The move should be explained to them so that they can actively participate in it.

The risk assessment should consider both routine manual handling and emergency situations when manual-handling procedures may have to be adapted (e.g., evacuation in the event of a fire). The risk assessment will help inform the procedures for that pupil’s needs. Procedures should be developed with the pupil or their representatives. An individual’s needs might vary day-to-day and even during the course of a day.

School should endeavour to ensure employees adopt the same handling techniques when assisting pupils with moving and handling to ensure a consistent and safe approach. This will help to keep the pupil calm and reduce the risk of struggling, sudden movement, or violence.

Key Actions

  • staff to identify and list tasks with a potential to cause injury
  • complete a manual handling risk assessment for each task
  • bring the assessment to the attention of relevant staff and pupils, where applicable
  • provide manual handling information and where required training for staff and pupils
  • supervise tasks to ensure safe lifting and handling
  • review assessments at least annually

Needlestick or Sharps Injuries

A needlestick or sharps injury is when the skin is punctured or scratched by a needle or sharp device that may be contaminated. Needles will most commonly be found in adrenaline auto-injectors (known as Epipens) or other medication prescribed to pupils or staff in an auto-injector. Needles, sharps and other waste or drug paraphernalia may also be illicitly brought on site by pupils or be dumped on site by members of the public in an attempt to covertly dispose of it. As such, the school will take all reasonable steps to protect staff and pupils from the risks of needles, sharps, and similar waste.

The direct handling of needles should be avoided if they are found on site. If this is not possible pick up the needle by the thick end wearing gloves. The needle should then be placed in an appropriate container for disposal. A used Epipen or other auto-injector for medication should be treated in the same way even if it incorporates a mechanism for automatically re-sheathing the needle after use.

If a member of staff or pupil suffers an injury from a needlestick or sharp which may be contaminated, they must:

  • encourage the wound to gently bleed, ideally holding it under running water
  • wash the wound using running water and plenty of soap
  • don’t scrub the wound whilst you are washing it
  • don’t suck the wound
  • dry the wound and cover it with a waterproof plaster or dressing
  • seek medical assistance as advised by the Principal
  • ensure that the injury is recorded in the Accident Book.

New and Expectant Mothers

The school recognises that the general precautions taken to protect the health and safety of the workforce as a whole may not in all cases protect new and expectant mothers and there may be occasions when, due to their circumstances, different and/or additional measures will be necessary.

To implement effective measures for new and expectant mothers the school will ensure that:

  • employees are instructed at induction to inform their manager of their situation at the earliest possible opportunity and that the highest level of confidentiality is maintained at all times
  • risk assessments are carried out for all work activities undertaken by new and expectant mothers and associated records and documentation maintained
  • new and expectant mothers are not allowed to work with chemicals of a mutagenic/teratogenic classification
  • necessary control measures identified by the risk assessment are implemented, followed, monitored, reviewed and, if necessary, revised
  • new and expectant mothers are informed of any risks to them and/or their child and the controls measures taken to protect them
  • any adverse incidents are immediately reported and investigated
  • provision is made to support new and expectant mothers who need to take time off work for associated medical reasons

Personal Protective Equipment

The school provides personal protective equipment (PPE) when the risk presented by a work activity cannot be eliminated or adequately controlled by other means. When it is provided, it is because health and safety hazards have been identified that require the use of PPE and it is therefore necessary to use it to reduce risks to a minimum.

To effectively implement its arrangements for the use of PPE the school will:

  • ensure that PPE requirements are identified when carrying out risk assessments
  • use the most effective means of controlling risks without the need for PPE whenever possible and only provide PPE where it is necessary
  • ensure that PPE is sourced appropriately and bears the “CE” certification mark
  • ensure PPE is available to all staff who need to use it
  • inform staff of the risks their work involves and why PPE is required
  • instruct staff in the safe use and maintenance of PPE
  • make arrangements for replacing worn or defective PPE

Staff provided with PPE for their own personal use at work will be required to sign to confirm its receipt.

Risk Assessment

Risk assessment is a systematic examination of what within our school can cause harm to people and it helps us determine whether we are doing enough, or further actions are required to reduce the likelihood of injury or ill health.

Our policy is to complete a risk assessment of all our known and reasonably foreseeable health and safety hazards covering all our premises, people, equipment, and activities in order to control risks and to plan and prioritise the implementation of the identified control measures.

We will ensure that:

  • assessments are carried out and records are kept
  • control measures introduced as a result of assessments are implemented and followed
  • employees are informed of the relevant results and provided with necessary training where applicable
  • any injuries or incidents lead to a review of relevant assessments
  • assessments are regularly monitored and reviewed

We may be controlling risks in various ways, determining the effectiveness of those controls is part of our risk assessment process.

It is the responsibility of the Principal to ensure risk assessments are conducted, although in practice the actual assessment process will be delegated to school staff.

Generic/Model risk assessments are acceptable so long as the assessor:

  • satisfy themselves that the ‘model’ risk assessment is appropriate to their work; and
  • adapt the model to their own actual work situations.

Safeguarding

(This should be read in conjunction with the Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy)

All education professionals, including teaching and support staff, have a statutory duty of care to all pupils. This duty extends to promoting the welfare of pupils who require additional support but are not suffering harm or at immediate risk of harm.

The school will promote awareness and best practice to deal with situations of suspected abuse or neglect and situations in which staff are best placed to observe such signs. The school has appointed a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL), who is responsible for providing support to staff members in their safeguarding duties and for liaising closely with the relevant social services such as children’s social care.

School Responsibilities

The school will:

  • contribute to inter-agency working for safeguarding and child protection in line with statutory requirements
  • implement a suitable safe recruitment process
  • implement and enforce a child protection policy and a staff behaviour policy or code of conduct
  • provide appropriate training to all staff members
  • provide the Designated Safeguarding Lead with appropriate authority, time, funding, resources, training, and support to allow them to effectively carry out their duties
  • provide a safe environment in which children can learn

Staff Responsibilities

The school requires all staff to:

  • act in line with the school Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
  • assist in providing a safe environment in which children can learn
  • always act in the best interests of the child

Recruitment

The law places requirements on all employers to ensure that all staff engaged to work with children are suitable to do so. We will take all reasonable steps in the employment process including carrying out checks on:

  • employment history considering all gaps in employment history
  • qualifications and professional registration
  • proof of identity (birth certificate and passport)
  • online presence (social media, professional site i.e. linked-in etc)
  • references.

We will also check current or prospective employees’ criminal records and whether they are included on lists of people barred from working with vulnerable groups.

Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) and other checks

A DBS check will be made for all staff members who will be required to engage in regulated activities prior to employment, and the school will carry them out in line with current legislation. Enhanced DBS checks and/or barred list checks will be made for staff members as necessary.

Record Keeping

We will ensure that appropriate, accurate, legible, and contemporaneous records of safeguarding concerns are made and stored securely in accordance with the Data Protection Act.

Further Information

All staff should refer to the Reception Office and website for full details of the schools policy and arrangements for child protection and safeguarding.

Smoking

Exposure to second-hand smoke, also known as passive smoking, increases the risk of lung cancer, heart disease and other illnesses. Ventilation or separating smokers and non-smokers within the same airspace does not stop potentially dangerous exposure.

It is the policy of the school that all its premises are smoke-free and that all employees and pupils have a right to work in a smoke-free environment.

Smoking is prohibited throughout the entire school premises, including the use of all artificial smoking aids (electronic or otherwise) with no exceptions. This policy applies to all employees, pupils, and visitors.

Implementation

All staff are obliged to adhere to and facilitate the implementation of the policy.

The school will ensure that all employees and contractors are aware of the policy on smoking. They will also ensure that all new personnel are given a copy of the policy on recruitment or induction.

Stress

The Health and Safety Executive define stress as “the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressure or other types of demand placed on them”. This makes an important distinction between pressure, which can be a positive state if managed correctly, and stress which can be detrimental to health.

Stress at work can come about for a variety of reasons. It may be excessive workload, unreasonable expectations, or overly demanding work colleagues. The school will endeavour to ensure a pleasant working environment and that employees are as free from stress as possible.

We will:

  • work to identify all workplace stressors and conduct risk assessments to eliminate stress or control the risks from stress
  • regularly review risk assessments
  • consult with employees on issues relating to the prevention of work-related stress

Employees who experience unreasonable stress which they think may be caused by work should raise their concerns with their Line Manager.

Supporting Pupils with Medical Needs

The school’s policy is to support pupils to attend school who have a medical condition. The school will therefore support the administration of short- and long-term medication and medical techniques where this is necessary for the pupil to continue to be educated at school

The school will also put in place procedures to deal with emergency medical needs. The school will establish procedures to ensure that all concerned, staff, parents, pupils and, where relevant, health professionals are aware of the pupil’s condition and what steps have been agreed either to manage the condition on a daily basis or to be implemented in case of an emergency.

Health Care Plans

Parents are responsible for providing the school with up-to-date information regarding their child’s health care needs and providing appropriate medication.

Individual Health Care Plans are in place for those pupils with significant medical needs e.g. chronic or ongoing medical conditions such as diabetes, epilepsy, anaphylaxis etc. These plans will be completed when the pupil starts at school, and at least annually thereafter. Any changes to the medical needs or medication will result in the Health Care Plan being reviewed earlier.

All staff are made aware of any relevant health care needs and copies of Health Care Plans are available on the schools computer network. Staff will receive appropriate training related to health conditions of pupils and the administration of medicines by a health professional as appropriate.

Administering Medicines

No child under 16 should be given medicines without their parent’s written consent. Any member of staff giving medicines to a child should check:

  • the child’s name
  • prescribed dose
  • expiry date, and
  • written instructions provided by the prescriber on the label or container. All medication supplied should be in its original packaging

If in doubt about any procedure staff should not administer the medicines but check with the parents or a health professional before taking further action. If staff have any other concerns related to administering medicine to a particular child, the issue should be discussed with the parent, if appropriate, or with a relevant health professional.

Temporary Staff and Volunteers

The school will take the necessary measures to ensure the health and safety of any staff members employed on a temporary or voluntary basis.

To achieve this, the school will provide temporary or voluntary staff with the following information prior to starting work:

  • details of the qualifications and skills are required to do the work safely
  • the requirements of the Child Protection and Safeguarding policy
  • any risks to health and safety identified by workplace risk assessments
  • the preventive measures to be taken
  • safe working procedures
  • the action to be taken in the event of an emergency.

The competence of temporary or voluntary staff will be assessed to ensure they are capable of working safely.

Trainee teaching staff or student teachers will additionally be required to complete the proper DBS checks before they are permitted to start work.

Training

Training in health and safety is a legal requirement and helps create competent staff at all levels within the school.

Competence of individuals through training helps individuals acquire the necessary skills, knowledge, and attitude.

All staff will need to know about:

  • the Health and Safety Policy
  • the structure and system for delivering this policy.

Staff will need to know which parts of the system are relevant to them, to understand the major risks in our activities and how they are controlled.

All our staff training needs will include:

  • relevant health and safety hazards and risk
  • the health and safety arrangements relevant to them
  • communication lines to enable problem solving.

All staff will also receive induction training.

Training will cover:

  • fire procedures including warning systems, actions to be taken on receiving warning, locations of exits/escape routes, evacuation, and assembly procedures,
  • first aid/injury procedures including reporting and the names of first aiders/appointed persons
  • instruction on any prohibition areas (i.e., no smoking)
  • issue of protective clothing/equipment and its use (if applicable)
  • instruction under COSHH (if applicable)
  • instruction applicable to their individual duties at work

Training needs will be reviewed as a result of job changes, promotion, new activities or new technology, following an accident/incident and performance appraisal.

Records of training will be kept for all employees.

Employees must:

  • participate in the induction training activities they have been required to attend or carry out
  • work according to the contents of any training they receive
  • request clarification of any points they do not fully understand
  • not operate hazardous plant or equipment, use hazardous chemicals or carry out any hazardous activity unless they have been appropriately trained and instructed.

Violence towards Staff

The school recognises that however completely unacceptable, in certain situations violent behaviour towards staff may occur and therefore will take all reasonable measures to protect staff from violence and aggression.

We define violence and aggression as:

  • actual or threatened physical assaults on staff
  • psychological abuse of staff
  • verbal abuse which includes shouting, swearing and gestures
  • threats against employees.

To achieve this objective, we will:

  • ensure that premises are kept secure
  • inform all employees of the procedure following a violent or challenging behaviour incident
  • not tolerate violence or challenging behaviour towards our employees
  • support the employees involved in any incident
  • support their decisions regarding the pressing of criminal charges
  • provide any post-incident assistance required by the employees
  • keep records of all incidents of violence and aggression and review the control measures with a view to continual improvement in employee safety.

Visitors

In the interest of safety and security, the school will take the necessary measures to protect staff and visitors from any accidents or incidents that may occur during visiting.

Employees hosting visitors much ensure that:

  • they are authorised to enter the premises and have signed in at Reception
  • they adhere to applicable health and safety instructions and rules during their visit
  • adequate information is passed to ensure their safety including emergency information
  • any protective clothing required is provided and worn
  • any accidents / incidents involving visitors are reported through the accident reporting arrangements.

Employees aware of people on the premises that may be unauthorised should report these to their Line Manager for action.

Emergency Action

In the event of the fire alarm sounding, all visitors should be escorted to the assembly point by school staff.

Visitors should not leave the area before notifying school staff.

Window Restrictors

The fitting and use of window restrictors within school premises is used to ensure the safety and security of members of staff, pupils, and visitors. The school is particularly concerned with preventing persons from falling from height and has fitted window restrictors to remove the possibility of persons opening a gap large enough for a person to fall through. It is therefore essential that all window restrictors are maintained in a good working order and that all staff report defects to the Principal as a matter of urgency.

The school will:

  • risk assess the danger of falling from any window and the effects of installing a window restrictor, including the possible loss of ventilation
  • identify all vulnerable parties who may be particularly at risk from falling out of windows
  • ensure that all window restrictors are secured with tamper-proof fittings
  • ensure that the window frames are sufficiently robust where the window requires a window restrictor
  • ensure that all window restrictors are properly maintained and kept in working order
  • provide adequate instruction to all staff who use or maintain window restrictors

Teaching staff are responsible for checking the window restrictors on a monthly basis. Any window restrictor that is found to be broken will be replaced or repaired as a matter of urgency, but the window must be kept locked shut until repairs are carried out. If the repair will not take place for more than a day, temporary signage will also be put in place to indicate that the window should not be used.

Work at Height

The school will take all reasonable steps to provide a safe working environment for all employees who may be affected by work at height activities.

The school will ensure that:

  • all work activities that involve work at height are identified and assessed
  • the need to undertake work at height will be eliminated whenever it is reasonably practicable to do so
  • all work at height is properly planned and organised
  • all employees required to use stepladders or ladders are competent
  • regular inspections of all stepladders and ladders are undertaken
  • any contractors on school property comply with this policy

Risk Assessment for Work at Height

For all activities involving work at height a risk assessment must be conducted and the findings recorded. This assessment should consider both the work to be done and the most appropriate access equipment to be used (not just what is available) to achieve a safe system of work.

When determining control measures the following hierarchy of controls for work at height as follows must be considered:

  • avoid the risk by not working at height, for example by working from existing platforms, using long reach equipment etc. If it is not practicable to do the work safely in some other way then:
  • use work equipment or other measures to prevent falls; and
  • where the risk of a fall cannot be eliminated further controls to minimise the distance and consequences of a fall should one occur.

The detail of the assessment will depend on the level of risk involved, as a general guide the risk assessment should consider:

  • the task and activity involved
  • the people (medical conditions etc.)
  • equipment to be used including erection and dismantling
  • the location (proximity to roads, overhead electrical cables etc)
  • the environment, poor conditions, and slippery surfaces (weather, temperature etc.)
  • the effect on pedestrians, falling objects.

Using Ladders (including stepladders)

Ladders should not be used simply because they are readily available, the risk assessment should determine if a ladder or stepladder is appropriate for the task.

Ladders and stepladders should only be used for short duration tasks (less than 30 minutes), light duty tasks or where more suitable access equipment cannot be used due to existing features of the site which cannot be altered.

For example, whilst a ladder may reach the area of work, if the task requires strenuous work, carrying bulky / heavy equipment or is likely to take more than 30 minutes then an alternative means of access such as a tower scaffold or podium steps would be more appropriate.

Only those persons who have been trained to use ladders safely may use them.

All ladders should be secured against unauthorised use.

Prior to use it should always be ensured that the ladder is in good condition and fit for purpose.

Where ladders are to be used to work from it should be ensured that:

  • a secure handhold and support are available at all times
  • the work can be completed without stretching
  • the ladder can be secured to prevent slipping.

Work Equipment

The school will provide a safe working environment in relation to work equipment safety and ensure all employees receive appropriate safety information and training in their work equipment.

To achieve this objective the school will:

  • retain and make available the manufacturer’s instruction manual for each item of equipment, where relevant
  • inspect all equipment at installation and prior to first use
  • regularly inspect work equipment in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations
  • maintain work equipment in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations
  • provide adequate instruction, information, and training to employees to enable the work equipment to be used and maintained safely

Risk Assessment

Risk Assessment involves identifying the hazards present in the work place or arising out of any work activity and evaluating the extent of the risks involved to employees and others, taking into account existing precautions and their effectiveness.

A hazard is something with a potential to cause harm and can include articles, substances, plant or machines, methods of work and the work environment.

Risk is the likelihood of harm from that hazard being realised. Risk increases with the number of people exposed to the hazard and also with the potential severity of the harm i.e., the resultant injury or ill health effect. If there are no hazards, there are no risks.

The regulations require that risk assessments are ‘suitable and sufficient’ in that they should identify all the significant hazards present within the business and its activities and that they should be proportionate to the risk. The assessment should cover all risks that are reasonably foreseeable.

The risk assessment must identify all those people who may be affected by the hazard, whether they are workers or others, such as members of the public.

We may be controlling risks in various ways, determining the effectiveness of those controls is part of the risk assessment process.

Health and safety law does not demand absolute safety when considering what safety controls are required but measures taken should go as far as is ‘reasonably practicable’; a balance between risk and costs, the greater the risk the greater the need to commit resources in terms of time and money to remove or control the risk.

It is a legal requirement that the significant findings of our risk assessments are brought to the attention of our employees.

Carrying out risk assessments

Those who are involved in risk assessments should:

  • be competent
  • have knowledge and experience of working procedures in practice, potential dangers and strengths and weaknesses of existing precautions
  • have knowledge and experience of how to solve problems identified by the assessment
  • be in a position to give the commitment, co-operation and resources required to implement the assessment results.

It is important that the person carrying out the risk assessment is competent. This means that the person must have the necessary skills and knowledge gained through experience and training and may have qualifications that enable them to make sound judgments.

The five stages of risk assessment

STEP 1 – IDENTIFY THE HAZARDS

Look for hazards by walking around the workplace. List the hazards that could reasonably be expected to cause harm. Ask for the opinion of employees as they may have noticed things that are not immediately obvious.

Examples of hazards include:

  • cables trailing over floors
  • fire
  • chemicals
  • electricity
  • loads which have to be moved manually
  • work equipment
  • working environment e.g., ventilation, lighting, heating.

STEP 2 – IDENTIFY WHO MAY BE HARMED AND HOW

List groups of people and individuals who may be affected by the hazards e.g.:

  • staff
  • pupils
  • members of the public
  • contractors on the premises.

Pay particular attention to vulnerable persons, e.g., those with disabilities, visitors, female employees who are pregnant or who have recently returned to work after having a baby, inexperienced employees, or young persons.

STEP 3 – EVALUATE AND CONTROL THE RISK

Evaluate the risks arising from the hazards and decide whether existing precautions are adequate or if more should be done. When evaluating the extent of the risk, account should be taken of the chance of some harm occurring (likelihood), the likely severity of this, and the number of people who could be affected.

The formula: Severity x Likelihood = Risk

Is used on the risk forms within this policy manual.

Even after all precautions have been taken some risk may remain. Ensure the precautions in place meet standards set by legal requirements comply with a recognised standard, represent good practice, and reduce the risk as far as is reasonably practicable.

Where additional controls or further action are necessary to reduce the risk, decide what more could reasonably be done by adopting the following principles:

  • avoid the risk completely
  • evaluate risks which cannot be avoided
  • combat risks at source
  • adapt work to the individual
  • make use of technical progress
  • replace the dangerous with none or less dangerous
  • develop an overall prevention policy
  • give priority to measures which protect the greatest number of people
  • give appropriate instructions to employees.

IMPLEMENTING AN ACTION PLAN

Once the level of risk has been determined and the control measures needed to reduce or eliminate the risk established, an action plan should be drawn up with timescales for implementation of the control measures.

STEP 4 – RECORD YOUR FINDINGS

The significant findings of the assessment must be recorded since these provide evidence that something has been done, it is also a legal requirement. Keep any written assessments for future reference and ensure that employees are informed of the findings and control measures, either existing or additional, that have to be observed and used. In some circumstances the findings of the risk assessment should also be given to others who could be affected, for example agency workers, contractors etc.

Hazards and example controls

HazardExample Control Measures
Manual HandlingMechanical aids, getting assistance, breaking loads into smaller units, training
Hazardous SubstancesSubstitution for less hazardous alternatives, ventilation, personal protective equipment, training
Work equipment (machinery, tools etc.)Guarding, demarcation of danger zones, restricted operation and use planned preventative maintenance, training
LaddersAvoid working at height, correct type of ladder/stepladders, maintenance, training
ElectricityInsulated tools, residual circuit breakers, fuses, earthing, inspection and testing of systems and appliances.
Stairs, etc.Good lighting, handrails, non-slip surfaces, slightly raised/highlighted front edges
FireDetection/warning systems, fire drills, extinguishers, signs, suitable storage facilities for substances and goods, fire retardant furniture and fittings
StressReduce/increase workload, more control over work, work suitable for the individual, avoidance of monotonous repetitive work
Work environmentGood lighting, ventilation, redesign layout of area, heaters/coolers

STEP 5 – MONITOR AND REVIEW THE ASSESSMENT

It is important that the control measures are monitored and that records are kept. A regular review of the assessments should be made to consider any changes to the methods or systems of work. You should also review the assessment following an accident, where there has been a significant change to the work, if new information comes to light, or if there is any other reason to believe that it may no longer be valid. Following the review, additional control measures should be implemented if required. Even if there are no significant changes since the original risk assessment, it should be regularly reviewed to confirm that it is still relevant and valid.

Fire Risk Assessment

A fire risk assessment is an organised and methodical look at the premises, the activities carried on there and the likelihood that a fire could start and cause harm to those in and around the premises.

The aims of the fire risk assessment are:

  • to identify the fire hazards
  • to reduce the risk of those hazards causing harm to as low as reasonably practicable
  • to decide what physical fire precautions and management arrangements are
  • necessary to ensure the safety of people in your premises if a fire does start.

The significant findings of the fire risk assessment, the actions to be taken as a result of the assessment and details of anyone especially at risk must be recorded.

It is important that the fire risk assessment is carried out in a practical and systematic way and that enough time is allocated to do a proper job. It must take the whole of your premises into account, including outdoor locations and any rooms and areas that are rarely used. Small premises are assessed as whole, larger premises are divided into rooms or a series of assessment areas using natural boundaries, e.g. process areas, offices, stores, as well as corridors, stairways and external routes.

One or more competent persons are appointed to carry out any of the preventive and protective measures needed to comply with the legislation. The competent persons are an appropriately trained, employee or, where appropriate, a third-party consultant.

The fire risk assessment should demonstrate that, as far as is reasonable, the needs of all relevant persons, including disabled people, have been considered.

Six Steps to Fire Risk Assessment

  1. Identify the hazards
  • Sources of ignition
  • Sources of fuel
  • Sources of oxygen
  1. Identify people at risk
  • Employees
  • Pupils
  • People in and around the premises
  • Vulnerable persons, disabled
  1. Evaluate, remove, reduce, and protect from risk
  • Evaluate the risk of fire occurring
  • Evaluate the risk to people from fire
  • Remove or reduce the fire hazards
  • Remove or reduce the risks to people
  1. Consider:
  • Detection and warning
  • Firefighting
  • Escape routes and travel distances
  • Lighting
  • Signs and notices
  • Maintenance
  1. Record, plan, inform, instruct and train
  • Record the significant findings and action taken
  • Prepare an emergency plan
  • Inform and instruct relevant people
  • Provide training
  1. Review
  • Keep assessment under review
  • Revise where necessary