Managing health and safety across schools and early childhood services me ngā kōhanga reo
Schools and early learning services me ngā kōhanga reo (early learning services), as Persons Conducting Business or Undertaking (PCBUs), are responsible for managing health and safety risks within their area of responsibility and expertise. A Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako could have oversight and set the direction of health and safety.
Establishing consistent policies and procedures across your Kāhui Ako could save duplication of work and allow more time for leaders to focus on leading teaching and learning. For example you could consider:
- sharing your health and safety systems with each other and using examples to tailor the policies and procedures to your specific environments
- using the Ministry of Education’s health and safety guidance and example policies to develop a health and safety system that suits your Community of Learning
- having consistent emergency management practices and protocols for working in and visiting each other’s schools and early learning services
- developing a process to escalate health and safety issues across the Community of Learning
- developing common health and safety induction processes for new staff that can be kept up-to-date by a nominated representative, rather than by each member of the Community of Learning.
How this tool could be used
Kāhui Ako will have multiple PCBUs with overlapping duties, but not all require duplication.
When working as a collective, you could coordinate responsibilities with the other PCBUs to fulfil your shared duties. Monitoring is an important aspect of this. Risks still need to be managed at the individual school and early learning service level. When risks or issues are escalated, it’s an opportunity to make improvements to health and safety systems across your Kāhui Ako.
More effective coordination of health and safety systems across Communities of Learning has the potential to make schools and early learning services safer for everyone.
Action planning ideas
- Set aside time to meet and review the Health and Safety Practical Guide for Boards of Trustees and School Leaders and Implementing the Health and Safety at Work Act Guide for ECE Services.
- Get regular feedback from your health and safety representatives so you can share learning and improve processes across your Kāhui Ako.
- Tailor shared policies and procedures to the specific needs of schools or early learning services in your Kāhui Ako.
- Develop shared risk management processes e.g. for sports days, school camps, EOTC and other events across your Kāhui Ako learning pathway.
Where to find out more
Go to the Ministry’s Health and Safety System for Schools and ECE Services web page
Call your local Ministry of Education office and ask for the health and safety portfolio holder.
WorkSafe: 0800 030 040 or Worksafe's website
Link with the Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako Development Map
This tool will help your Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako progress within Domain 6 of the Development Map: Building a thriving Community of Learning | Kāhui Ako.