Protecting students, staff, parents and visitors is a wellbeing priority during the bushfire season.
Independent schools that are on the Bushfire At-Risk Register have Emergency Management Plans that require schools, kindergartens and child care facilities to close when Code Red is declared in the area.
Like all other schools in Victoria, they must demonstrate:
a heightened state of readiness
they have open lines of communication with local emergency services
readiness to relocate students and staff to a nominated shelter or evacuate to a safe area.
This might mean cancelling offsite activities and out-of-school care on Code Red days, and changes or cancellations to school bus services.
Where possible, parents will be given up to three days’ notice of a Code Red closure depending on the school, by letter, SMS message or phone tree.The decision will be confirmed by 1.00 pm the day before the planned closure and will not change, even if the weather improves.
SMS Code Red or other warning messages are sent to all mobile phones in the affected area, including those used by children, and parents need to alert children. Students who receive an SMS warning while they are at school must follow the school’s emergency procedures.