Following the recent message from Derek Baker, you will be aware that the Department of Education has advised schools to open from tomorrow (Wednesday 18 October).
I would like to thank you for your cooperation over the last few days as we have all worked to ensure the safety of all of our children and young people. I understand that it has been a disruptive few days and the efforts of school staff are greatly appreciated in keeping parents informed in challenging circumstances.
Our focus now is on getting school life back to normal as soon as possible. The relevant EA staff will provide support and guidance as required to ensure that all schools are back up and running tomorrow.
For the safety of your pupils and staff, please continue to adhere to advice from the relevant authorities as our emergency services continue the clear up operation in the coming days.
Damage to Schools
EA is already aware of some damage to school premises. If you have not already done so, please carry out a full check of your school premises to satisfy yourself that it is safe to open for pupils tomorrow.
When assessing school premises, your own safety is paramount. The Health and Safety Executive has issued some useful guidance on keeping safe in the aftermath of the storm. www.hseni.gov.uk/news/health-and-safety-advice-aftermath-storm-ophelia
All damage to premises should be reported immediately to your local EA Office Maintenance Helpdesk. Information is available on the EA website at the following link www.eani.org.uk/schools/emergency-management-guidance/
School transport arrangements will be in place from Wednesday 18 October. However, the recent adverse weather may impact some arrangements due to road closures. EA Transport staff are reviewing the situation very carefully and are working to minimise any impact on pupils travelling to and from school.
Where road closures impact on transport arrangements, some pupils may be required to access school transport at alternative locations temporarily. We will seek to keep any disruption to a minimum and we appreciate continued cooperation from schools, pupils and parents.
As always, the safety of our children and young people is our greatest priority. We look forward to getting back to business as usual tomorrow. If you have any concerns, please contact the relevant EA staff.
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