School Closure and Adverse Weather

Given the recent adverse weather conditions the SSTA calls on Scottish Government, local authority employers and independent school management to make careful scrutiny of their policies on adverse weather.  Such scrutiny should involve answering the key question of what circumstances merit the closure of schools on the basis of “better safe than sorry”.

Alan McKenzie, Acting General Secretary said today “Many people will have viewed with some horror the widely distributed news picture of the overturned tanker in West Lothian involving the tragic death of the tanker driver.  What will not be known is that one of the motor vehicles upon which the tanker overturned was driven by a member of the SSTA anxiously driving to his school.  Our member’s escape from this tragedy was lucky.  However, we believe that there is excessive pressure on Councils to keep schools open when closure would be the safer option.  We need some pragmatic decision making process where, in circumstances of obvious danger, schools can be shut and the workforce kept safe without the threat of losing pay.  Teachers can perform key functions at home and employers can ensure this.  It is perhaps stating the obvious but, the safety of the workforce must take precedence over the fear of announcing that a school has closed due to abnormal weather conditions.

For further information contact:-

Alan McKenzie

Acting General Secretary

0131 313 7300