Letter to Parents/Carers – 30/03/2021

Dear parents and carers

We have now experienced several malicious activations of the fire alarm. On each occasion we have successfully evacuated the school building and the incidents have been dealt with in line with our behaviour policy.  However, it is extremely concerning that another incident occurred today. Clearly, these false alarms cause significant inconvenience and disruption to students, staff, and visitors. Any incidents of malicious setting off, or conspiring to set off the school fire alarm are taken very seriously. The Trust and Governing body will also be notified, because malicious setting off of the fire alarm impacts on the whole of our school community.  

Staff will speak to students about this immediately in lesson today and following our return from the Easter break. Students will be informed about the seriousness of setting off the fire alarm and the very serious consequences of being caught doing so. Students will be reminded to treat any sounding of the fire alarm as an emergency and to follow fire evacuation procedures promptly and sensibly. Students will also be reminded of the important work that the fire service do and how systems in school are there to protect our community and are not to be tampered with.

Obviously, we are very disappointed that a very small minority of our students have chosen to behave in this manner. I am pleased to be able to tell you, however, that the student community have responded very calmly and sensibly to the evacuations, although we realise that for many students this may cause concern because of further loss of learning time. You will be aware that we use CCTV around school and it is in operation at all fire points. We are therefore able to identify the cause of any malicious alarm activation very quickly.  

Fire alarms are there to keep students and staff safe and anyone who has ever been affected by a real fire or knows others who have, will absolutely understand how important the alarms are to our safety. When the alarms are set off intentionally and not as part of our scheduled drills or indeed an actual emergency, this puts the procedure at risk, possibly diminishing the importance of evacuation in the eyes of students. Incidents of this nature also impact on teaching and learning time which we know is so important, particularly after we have just returned from lockdown.

I would really appreciate if you could support us by reinforcing the effects of this malicious action at home as we do not want this to happen in the future.  Our community is so important to us and we want every student and staff member to feel safe and secure at school. We also want students to know that their time in school is valued and not wasted because of the actions of a small minority. After so much disruption due to lockdown, staff want to make every minute count for our students and I know that will be important to you as well as parents and carers.

Thank you as always for your ongoing support.

Yours sincerely

Allie Denholm

Headteacher

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