Broadstone Hall Primary School Critical Incident Statement
At Broadstone Hall Primary School we take safeguarding and safety very seriously. As you are probably already aware, schools are required to hold regular fire drills to practise the evacuation procedures for the occurrence of a fire on the premises. At our school, we hold a fire drill at least once a term to ensure that all of the children and staff are aware of these procedures.
It is important that we continually review all our procedures, taking into account even those events that are very unlikely to occur. As part of this process, we have introduced a new procedure called “lockdown”.
This is part of the Critical Incident Procedures Document provided for every educational establishment in the Local Authority and we have spent a significant amount of time adapting this to suit the requirements of our individual setting.
What is a lockdown and when would we carry it out?
A lockdown procedure is a standard health and safety procedure, similar to a fire drill. Our lockdown procedure would be used when there is a threat to the safety of pupils, staff and others in the school, and when it is safer for everyone to remain in school rather than to evacuate. The aim is to keep people safe by confining them to a secure place of safety.
Situations where our lockdown procedure may be used include:
· A potentially dangerous person or animal on the school site
· A disturbance or dangerous situation in the local community that could affect the school
· A nearby chemical incident or other risk of air pollution
· A major fire or explosion in the vicinity of the school
· An incident related to terrorism
Our Lockdown Drill Arrangements
Once the system is established and fully understood by members of staff, lockdown drills will take place annually.
During a lockdown drill, staff members will keep pupils indoors for a period of time, rather than use outdoor areas, open spaces or corridors. The drill will be timed to ensure it causes the least possible disruption to pupils’ learning, whilst providing a test of the lockdown procedures.
It is essential that drills are carried out, so that in the case of a real emergency situation, staff are fully rehearsed in their responsibilities and duties, and in order to identify any potential areas for improvement.
Staff members will be instructed to remain calm at all times, so that pupils do not get distressed. The drill process will be explained to pupils beforehand, during an assembly, so that they are clear that it is a drill and are not upset in any way when it occurs.
We will inform parents of the half term during which a drill will occur so that you are aware of what we are doing at the school. It may also be useful for you to discuss the drill with your child beforehand to reassure them, should you feel this to be appropriate.
Instructions for parents in the event of an actual lockdown (not a practice drill)
· The top priority for the School Incident Management Team will be to keep the children safe in the event of a real lockdown emergency
· In the event of a critical incident, the emergency services would take control of the situation once they are onsite
· The School Incident Management Team would then follow the instructions of the emergency services onsite
· Parents and carers will be informed that the school is in lockdown via the school’s website and school spider app
· Parents and carers should not attempt to call or come to the school, as this may hinder the school’s effort to contact and work with the emergency services
· Parents and carers should not discuss the event on social media, as this may spread false information and create panic
We hope the lockdown procedure will never have to be used, but need to ensure we are fully prepared for all situations and having a regular annual practice will ensure that this is so.
Simon Langley - Headteacher
Laura Thomas - Chair of the Board of Governors