Health and Safety Procedures
There needs to be procedures in place in order to manage each aspect of the school’s health and safety system. Having a structured procedure helps identifying risks easier, and also leads to a smoother management process overall.
Usually, the procedures that are required will be determined by the risk assessments and legal compliance audits. Any health and safety issue that needs specific managing must be addressed in terms of a formal procedure. Examples can include: emergency evacuation procedures, how to maintain fire equipment, procedure for communication of OHS information to employees, and so on. Once an official procedure is completed it becomes legally binding in terms of the OHS Act and the employer (school) can be held liable for failing to comply with their own procedures.
OHS procedures need to be prioritised according to levels of importance and the most important should always be completed first. Procedures need to be clear and easy to understand. In addition to having all of them in writing, each one needs to be explained to the employees so that there is no misunderstanding.
All procedures need to be regularly monitored and compliance enforced. Any procedures that are found to be impractical need to be revised (such as checking equipment that is no longer on the school premises). Any procedures not complied with requires discipline (enforced by the OHS Act) which must be immediately implemented.
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