Page last updated at 13:05 GMT, Thursday, 21 January 2010

Severe weather teacher strategy

School closed
Kent County Council want schools to stay open during severe weather

Teachers in Kent are being asked to consider strategies to keep schools open during periods of severe weather.

Kent County Council (KCC) have suggested that teachers go into their nearest school when it is unlikely they will reach their school of employment.

KCC said that a list of teachers and 'buddy' schools could be drawn up.

A spokesman for the teaching union NASUWT said the proposals were a "non-starter"and that teachers were not "babysitters".

Councillor Sarah Hohler said: "There could be a list of those teachers who've volunteered, so the school knows in advance which teachers are likely to come in.

"Maybe you're not able to provide a full curriculum, but at least you'll be safe and warm and well looked after."

Trevor Desmoyers-Davis, the county secretary of NASUWT said: "I think it's a non-starter. They've only got control over a certain number of teachers so you're going to have a complete mess.

"There needs to be an effective strategy to keep the county moving during extreme weather conditions so that teachers, students and parents can get there.

"Being in front of the students is only part of the process, they may be able to babysit but teachers are employed to teach."

The proposals would only affect those teachers employed by KCC and would not include those who work at academies or faith schools.

During the period of heavy snow in the county, more than 200 schools had to be closed.

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