The Importance of School Safety

It goes without question that schools have a duty of care for ensuring the safety of its pupils and staff members but safety in schools has deeper ramifications including legal implications, Ofsted ratings and school reputation.  Proper health and safety in a school is paramount to its success. In an increasingly health and safety conscious society the importance of ensuring safety in schools is unquestionable and in this article we will explore in greater detail just why that is.

 

Reputation

The reputation of a school can be its lifeblood. Having an outstanding reputation can help to entice the highest quality staff and for independent schools and academies be an important determiner of whether they attract funding and investment.

Regular accidents and incidents can easily the hard earned reputation built by a school. The affect can be even more damaging if the accident has garnered media coverage or led to a law suit. On the contrary, having a longstanding record of health and safety excellence demonstrates a commitment to quality and professionalism that will only have a positive impact on how the company is viewed.

Legal Obligations

Though instilling a safe environment is incorporated into the values of most schools, the legal obligation of schools to safeguard members of staff and pupils should be a huge determinant of schools employing safe practices.

Schools are governed by the:

  • Management of Health and Safety Regulations 1999,
  • Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999,
  • The Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007
  • The Young Person’s Safety Act 1995.

If you would like more information on this then read our article on School Safety and the Law.

Cost Savings

For schools, budgetary restraints and incoming revenue are one of the most difficult and frustrating elements of daily operation ensuring budgets aren’t impacted of the costs that can be associated with accidents is imperative.

The costs associated with accidents will most likely be the repair and maintenance of damaged property and the replacement broken or damaged equipment. However, in serious cases costs can escalate to cover loss of staff time, sick pay and legal costs.

Ofsted Report

Ofsted reports can provide a good insight into how a company is performing but can cause a great deal of stress for teachers. Safety now plays an integral part of the latest Ofsted framework and appears in both the ‘Behaviour and safety of pupils’ section and the ‘Quality of leadership in, and management of, the school’. These areas assess whether pupils feel safe, whether necessary steps are taken to promote pupil safety at school and whether children are taught to assess risk and keep themselves safe.

What we can see is that employing safe practices is highly important to a school and we haven’t even touched on Risk Assessments. Most accidents can be prevented, yet most preventative methods are only implemented after an accident happens. Make sure that you have the proper protection in place before an accident occurs, and you can find out more about our Safety Pads by visiting our schools page.