Safeguarding considerations for Schools: Do we need to update to our Risk Assessment / Welfare Risk Assessment for the Autumn Term?

Yes. It is a legal requirement that schools revisit and update their risk assessment as part of planning for full return in the autumn term, to consider the additional risks and control measures to enable a return to full capacity. This should include a review of all wider risk assessments to ensure they are updated in light of current circumstances (and to ensure, for example, such assessments include consideration of safeguarding issues and the promotion of pupil wellbeing including matters such as mental health), and to reduce risks to the lowest reasonably practicable level.

As part of a school’s obligations to make arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of pupils in the school, schools may also wish to review their risk assessment policy for pupil welfare (whether part of its health and safety assessment or otherwise).

The guidance for full opening includes information regarding the Health and Safety Risk Assessment at Annex A, including in relation to consulting employees.

As the school proprietor (e.g. the governing body, academy trust or local authority in the case of maintained schools) has legal responsibility for health and safety, they should ensure that procedures are in place to monitor the effectiveness of health and safety arrangements, identify issues and adjust accordingly.

The law and practice referred to in this article or webinar has been paraphrased or summarised. It might not be up-to-date with changes in the law and we do not guarantee the accuracy of any information provided at the time of reading. It should not be construed or relied upon as legal advice in relation to a specific set of circumstances.

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