In order for a health and safety system to be set up and then effectively managed, a budget will need to be in place. Financial planning is critical to the success of the health and safety program in schools.
The school governing body has control over the day-to-day management and control of the budgets, as well as the school activities and training. Employees need to understand the extent of the governing body’s responsibilities in terms of health and safety.
The Department of Education (in the case of government schools) is responsible for ensuring that the budget and other financial aspects of health and safety are responsibly addressed and managed.
The Department of Education, which is the employer, retains the ultimate legal responsibility for health and safety matters in schools, including that of the school budget allocations. The Department should continue to play a complete role in the health and safety standards set in the school, and legally has to provide guidance in terms of funding. This includes ensuring compliance with health and safety standards (and the budgetary allowances in this regard), acting promptly to hazards and risks identified, and attention to matters of health and safety, particularly when planning overall budgeting priorities.
Safety budgets need to be assessed after each risk assessment, to ensure that allocations are made in order of priority. It is the responsibility of the safety officer or representative to inform the Department of Education, in report format, what the requirements are to meet health and safety compliance and thereafter, the governing body and Department of Education will determine where funding should be allocated.
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