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Schools Emergency Planning

Resonding to Emergency Situations
The purpose of an School Emergency Management Plan (SEMP) is to provide a detailed plan on how each specific school will prepare and respond to emergency situations.

The forethought and planning for emergencies is significant to adapt and respond to emergencies which can and do happen within schools and surrounding communities.

Planning for emergencies not only prevents an incident getting worse and saves lives, but also provides the confidence to staff and governors, parents, carers and pupils and enhances school reputation as a safe place to learn and work.

The Department for Education recommends that schools create and maintain a Schools Emergency Management Plan, which also appears as an audit requirement as part of the schools risk assessment for insurance purpose.


Telephone: 0151 233 8637 or Email:  emergency.planning@liverpool.gov.uk  
SEMP Process

Stage 1: Complete a Business Impact Analysis

This process allows you to identify the parts of your school which are critical to its survival and helps you set out the resources which you must have if you are going to continue during a distribution to emergency incident.

Incident Management Contact Flowchart 

Stage 2: Develop your SEMP

Taking into account your schools risk assessment and the results from your Business Impact Analysis you will now be well positioned to commence production of the School Emergency Management Plan.

The SEMP template School Emergency Management Plan and supporting guidance SEMP Guidance will take you through the process.

There a number of planning resources below to help you in establishing your School Emergency Management Plan.

Stage 3: Test your Plan

 Your SEMP plan cannot be considered fit for purpose until it has been tested.
The purpose of testing is to identify any gaps which can be filled to improve your plan.

Stage 4: Train your Staff

This is an important step in embedding emergency management planning into the culture of your school and its staff.

It is particularly important to deliver a programme of training for staff who are directly involved in the execution of the Schools Emergency Management Plan, so that they are fully aware of their roles and responsibilities.

Stage 5: Maintaining and Reviewing your SEMP

It is important that plans are tested reviewed, updated and maintained on a frequent basis.

Schools operations, staff and buildings can change so it is important that a plan reflects these changes.

Identify a key member of staff, preferably the School Business Manager or Head Teacher to take ownership of the plan and arrange for a comprehensive review of the SEMP to take place periodically.

Your schools individual risk assessment should be considered when developing your SEMP as schools will have individual site specific risks to contend with.

Levels of Risk

 Although it is optimistic to plan for every possible eventuality which may arise, incidents may be grouped within three different levels of concern;

Level 0- Localised incidents

Level 0 relates to disruption to routine but not an immediate threat to well-being. For example, weather problems, failed heating service, fallen trees, floods, vandalism, minor earthquake, ICT failure or disruption, service power off, water leak and flooding.

Level 1- Localised emergencies

Level 1 relates to incidents which may involve a real threat of, or actual injury or death. For example in school incidents include, gas leak, fire, deliberate act of violence, laboratory explosion, pupil or teacher hostage and destruction of serious vandalism on the school.

Secondly, out of school incidents include, the death of a pupil of member of staff through natural causes of accidents, large cluster of human viral infections which may lead to concern of a localised epidemic, civil disturbances and terrorism, transport related accidents involving a number of pupils and staff, death or serious injuries on school journeys and excursions.

Level 2 - Major community emergencies

Level 2 incidents relates to major emergencies which may affect whole communities and usually involve a County Emergency Planning Department.

For example, serious road of rail accidents, aircraft crash, factory explosion, terrorist attack, flu or viral epidemic leading to a national alert.

Planning Resources

Page last updated on 2017-04-03 14:27:07