Decisions have to be made bearing in mind the needs of both WGHS and QEGS Senior and Junior schools, responsible for over 2,000 children aged between 3 and 18.
As a Foundation we are constrained by the actions of those in charge of transport who might decide to send a bus or train earlier, on time or not at all. While we can try to arrange for the school coaches to depart as soon as possible, we cannot arrange to alter the timing of any other bus or train service, although we will obtain information and pass this on to the pupils.
The Foundation’s priority is for the safety of its pupils. If weather reports confirm that transport is likely to be seriously affected, the decision to end school will be taken as soon as possible so that all pupils concerned can be told by 2.00 pm at the latest. Pupils will not be free before these times other than in very exceptional circumstances.
When pupils are free to leave school they should go straight home, if possible, but if they need to wait for special transport they may wait in the schools until they are collected. The schools will remain open until every pupil has been collected. The priority will then be to shut the schools, as close to the normal Senior School finishing time of 4.00pm as possible, to allow staff to travel home.
If parents live a long way from school and would experience difficulty in picking up their child when school finishes if the weather deteriorates still further, we would leave it to their discretion whether or not to send the child to school that day.
It is most important that parents should - in their own interests - have contingency plans, making clear to their sons or daughters what they must do in order to get home when they are released early from school in the event of bad weather.
The Heads of the Junior Schools, as a policy, will not dismiss their pupils before time. They will however release individual pupils early if they are called for by an elder brother or sister or by a parent or if they are travelling on school coaches. If it is arranged that the school coaches will leave early, the Junior School Offices will endeavour to contact parents by telephone before releasing children for these coaches in order to determine that there will be an adult at home.
As a general principle we will not close the schools unless there are exceptional circumstances. If the need arises then a decision will be made as early as possible.
Details will be published here on the Foundation website, via Twitter and a text message will be sent to parents via School Comms.