Dear Head Teacher,
As you are aware school attendance is very important to us, and we have been monitoring your school closures, and feel that your snow closure days now reach the threshold for concern.
Every day a school shuts due to snow, or any other reason, there is a risk to our children’s grades.
At this stage, we would like to make the following suggestions and recommendations:
In future, any snow closure days will only be authorised if they are verified in writing by a Met Office official or a highways agency officer.
We understand that it can be difficult to get appointments to arrange these, but Keep trying. Hopefully, the receptionist will understand how badly you need the evidence and will squeeze you in for a quick appointment.
We are aware there are long waiting lists in some areas, but we need the evidence anyway.
In cases of recurrent closures please consider the following:
It might be helpful to make a sticker chart, with a party or other reward for the schools who have stayed open, at the end of the year.
Sometimes we find that schools have just got into a habit of closing when there is snow, so we suggest forcing them to stay open. Once everyone gets there, they will be fine.
This tendency to avoid opening could be due to behaviour patterns caused by a lack of discipline or resilience.
It may be helpful to get to the root of the problem and would like to offer a place for senior manager’s parents on our behaviour and discipline course. There is currently a 6-month waiting list for these courses, but in the meantime please remain open.
We are concerned about your social needs being met due to isolation of closing the school and the wellbeing of your teachers. We have made a referral to early help to ensure their needs are being met, and that they are being cared for.
We suggest that staff dress in their work clothes and keep their day structured. There is evidence that allowing staff to use technology and watch television on these days can be counterproductive to their being able to return to school. Please ensure that they are do not have access to these during their usual working day.
Please encourage your teachers to work during the school day. If teachers think they can play all day they will obviously prefer to stay at home. In fact, please make sure staying home is as uncomfortable as it can be, so that they will want to return to school as soon as possible.
If this closure continues we could come to your home to accompany you to school. We will help dress you, or take you in your pyjamas and you could get changed at school.
If the school is unable to stay open for a whole day we would be willing to negotiate a reduced timetable, if there is professional agreement that this would be appropriate.
We are aware of cases where schools have fabricated and induced snow, but we might or might not be investigating you for that, and even if we were we wouldn’t be able to tell you. We would like to remind you that other schools have managed to stay open.
We would like to offer you support with school snow closure issue and feel that a TAT or TAHT meeting might be useful (Team around the Head Teacher).
We will meet to discuss review these issues within the next 14 days and hope to see an improvement within that time, or we will have no choice but to escalate this to a warning of potential legal proceedings due to failure to provide an education under the Education Act 1996.
Please be assured that we only want what is best for your school.
The Parents School Closure committee.
Please sign and return I ______________ headteacher of ______________ commit to keeping my school open at all times, including snow days unless I have produced the necessary professional evidence that it should be closed.