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Health and Safety Project Essay

This work-based project forms an important part of your training. The aim of this project is to familiarise yourself with your working environment and the Health and Safety issues that arise in your placement.

On completion you should:

Understand the structure your organisation’s; and your role in it Understand the importance of Health and Safety at work
Understand the legal requirements of Health and Safety at work Know your organization’s health, hygiene and accident procedures

To complete this assignment you may need to make notes in before filling in the information. Take your time and carefully answer every question as fully as possible; the more you write the more criteria you will meet. If you need any help please speak to your workplace supervisor, your colleagues, your College tutor or your Training Co-ordinator.

Describe your placement, e.g. busy town/country, client group (age, culture, special needs):

The site that Oakland’s is situated on was once the site of the old Parcroft Juniors School, which was torn down and rebuilt with the merger of the Westfield Infant’s. The newly reformed school was named after the old oak tree, which still stands on the grounds of the school and has done for 300 years. So it was only fitting that the school was named Oakland’s, and when you talk to past pupils who attended Parcroft, they always fondly remember playing marbles or chase under the oak trees branches.

Oakland’s Primary School is based within the busy town of Yeovil and is situated between Preston Grove, Linden Road and Summerleaze Park. It is a modern High Tec school with all the modern facilities you would expect. The school was built on one level giving easy access to all able bodied and unable bodied pupils alike to attend the school. The building is quiet self efficient and generates its own electric with solar panels, has under floor heating to heat the school throughout and even the lights run on sensors to turn on and off when you enter and exit a room. Each classroom is fitted with large touch screen boards, which the teachers can run from their laptops giving them a huge range of access to a wide range of teaching resources, enhancing the pupils learning to the up most and keeping them interactive with their learning.

Roughly 420 pupils attend the school, ranging from the ages of 4 years up to 11 years old. The school uniform is a purple jumper with the school emblem of an Oak Tree, white sweatshirts, grey trousers or skirts and black shoes. Each of the 14 classes within the school has been named after an animal, giving each class its own identity, including a mascot. There is also four teams throughout the school, which is used within each classroom and the children are encourage to win team points for their team so that at the end of the school year their team can win the team cup. This helps with the pupils taking pride in their achievements and to try hard to earn a point.

There are many facilities within the school and on the surrounding grounds of the school, these include: The I.C.T suite where the children learn how to use computers, from word processing to using the internet safely. The school hall which is used for weekly assemblies, indoor sports activities, and even the Christmas nativity plays. The music room which is full of many different musical instruments, letting the pupils express themselves and learn about music. The fully equipped cookery room were the pupils learn about healthy eating and different foods from around the world. This is also where the breakfast club is held every morning.

Then there is Forest school which is held in a purpose built log cabin surrounded by trees and a wildlife garden. This is where pupils go for environmental studies, to learn about insects, plants, animals and the environment. The Outdoor facilities include several outside learning areas that are used throughout the day depending on weather. There are also extensive fields, several play areas and two activity play areas. Oakland’s Primary also offers a large range of activities and clubs after school, which range from performance arts, music, sports, computer clubs and gardening clubs. There is also a holiday care scheme which offers families affordable, childcare.

Within Oakland’s there is also an Autism Base which is known as Peacocks Class. This based within it’s own sector of the school’s main building and is solely run by the council and has its own staff. The base consists of two teaching areas, two sensory rooms, a kitchen, a toilet and its own outside area.

Non-Statutory requirements (in your workplace)

What is the ratio of adults to children?

In Foundation and Key Stage One the ratio of adults to children is 1 to 10

In Key Stage Two the ratio of adults to children is 1 to 15

Are the ratios different in any other room at work; if yes please give details?

Yes in the Autism base the ratio of adult to children is different.

Statutory requirements

What are the statutory requirements regarding adult: child ratios?

The EYFS states that the adult to child ratio within classes with children over the age of three should be 1 Adult to 13 Children. But must be a qualified teacher, or hold a relevant level 6 qualification. It also states that there should also be at least one other member of staff within the classroom that holds a level 3 qualification.

However if the teacher is absent from the classroom then the ratio requirements change and it is recommended that it should be 1 Adult to 8 Children. But must hold a level qualification and the other staff within the classroom should hold a level 2 qualification.

On school trips the ratios change again dependent on the type of trip. Also these can change when dependant on certain circumstances and other factors, which could Include if any of the pupils have special educational needs or medical needs. It can also be altered depending on the experience and competence of the staff attending the trip, including the number of first aiders going along.

It is recommended that the ratios should follow: 1:6 for years 1 to 3, 1:10 for years 4 to 6, and 1: 15 / 20 for years 7 upwards.

Why are these necessary?

To make sure that the children are being educated and taken care of correctly and are under the supervision of qualified staff members.

What are the statutory requirements regarding space?

Class sizes: Schools must make sure that children aged between 5 years and 7 years aren’t taught in classes of more than 30 pupils. There is no legal limit for pupils aged 8 years and over.

Why is this necessary?

So that schools do not have oversized classes, as then the children do not get the attention they need to learn.

Organisation and Structure of the Workplace

Every organisation or business has its own basic structure of management. Each manager is responsible for those in their department. The structure can be set out like a pyramid. Responsibilities may differ.

Please identify all staff roles and responsibilities; highlighting your own:


They school governors are responsible for working with the school to ensure that it delivers a good quality education.

Head Teacher

Has overall responsibility for the school, its staff, its pupils and the education they receive.

Deputy Head Teacher

Plays a major role in managing the school, particularly in the absence of the head teacher. Is also responsible for a curriculum area and specific areas of the school management, delegated to them by the Head Teacher.
Inclusion Leader

The special educational needs coordinator is responsible for day to day provisions for pupils with special educational needs.

NQT Mentor

They are responsible for the Newly Qualified Teachers, and are there to give support and guidance when needed.

Foundation Stage Leader

Responsible for children in foundation stage, leading the foundation team of teachers and teaching assistants.

KS1 Leader

To manage Key Stage 1 team of teachers and teaching assistants.

KS2 Leader

To manage Key Stage 2 team of teachers and teaching assistants.

Phase Leaders

Responsible for co-ordinating and motivating staff and children in their allocated phase to ensure high levels of achievement.


Are responsible to plan, prepare and lessons to meet the needs of all their pupils in their care. Setting and marking work and recording pupil’s development as necessary. But also within Oakland’s each teacher is responsible for an area of the curriculum, such as; A curriculum coordinator for Numeracy, which makes them responsible for the leadership and management of the subject.

Teaching Assistants

To assist the classroom teacher to prepare for lessons such as resources that are required, or to put out equipment at the start of the lesson. To support the teacher in the day to day running of the classroom from up keeping data files, cataloguing resources, maintaining inventories, and photocopying. Undertaking learning activities with a small group of children, who may need extra support.

Lunchtime Supervisors

They look after the children during lunchtime breaks, so that most of the staff members are able to take their breaks. They take the children who have school dinners to the schools canteen, they also look after the pupils who bring pack lunch. Within one of their classroom or outside weather permitting. They are also first aid trained and look after the children whilst playing outside.

Administration Staff

There is a wide range of job roles within this department of the school, ranging from:

First point of contact for the school either by telephone, email or face to face. Diary management for the Head teacher or departmental leaders Issue visitor passes where necessary and maintain signing in and out books Maintain data bases and filing systems

Prepare correspondence and collect fees
To contact parent/guardians for specific reasons when requested by staff and to request for collection of sick children on behalf of the staff.

And many more jobs besides

Site Staff

Maintain the school, deal with cleaning, maintenance of equipment and the school building.

Catering Staff

Cater for the pupils and staff that eat within the canteen, with healthy food within their budget.


Helping within the school, with assisting the classroom teacher with tasks such as listening to pupils read, taking part on school trips and helping out at school fairs.

List the things you have agreed with your employer that you are prohibited from doing:

Entering the Autism base,
Administering first aid to a pupil this must be done by a qualified first aider.

What breaks are you entitled to?

When working a full day within the school – from 8.45am to 3pm I am entitled to an hour for lunch.

Though on occasions I may be required to cover a lunchtime supervisor duty, which then I will be allocated an hour within the afternoon.

This is the same for break times, we are entitled to take the break ourselves or we may be asked to supervise.

If you are unhappy with a health & safety issues what would you do?

I would have to report this to the site service manager or to the deputy head teacher

Risk Assessments

Has your placement got a risk assessment policy?

Yes – Every school and workplace must have a risk assessment policy.

Where is it kept?

Within the Administration Office

Who has access to it?

The HSE, The Governors, The Head Teacher, staff members and parents

How often are they reviewed and why is this necessary?

It is reviewed on a yearly basis unless any changes have to be implemented within the school. Then the risk assessment will be reviewed as a part of the process. Such as recently the school has had some staff members trained in manual lifting and so the risk assessment has to be updated for this new procedure within the school.

Give an example of a risk assessment you have done and why?

When reading with the foundation children one to one they have a tendency to swing on their chair. This has risks of the chair flipping backwards and the child following which in turn could cause harm to themselves. So I have had to ask them to sit properly and not to swing on their chair.

Identify and list below 4 possible risks/hazards that might occur within your work placement and state how you would prevent each one?, explain how they will be monitored and reviewed 1. Pupils trapping fingers in the internal fire doors.

The fire doors are extremely heavy to open to exit the classrooms or to enter the bathroom, especially for the less able bodied and the smaller children within foundation. These doors are on hinges and close back on themselves when opened. Are very heavy as they are designed to protect against fire.

However I have witnessed children struggling with these doors. When trying to open these doors by themselves they tend to place one hand on the door frame as they use the other hand to open the door. If they where to lose grip of the door it would swing back and the likely hood of trapping their fingers is a high risk. The less able bodies students struggle even more so and they normally have a buddy within their classroom to open these doors for them. Which in turn takes away their independence, and they normally have a fear of getting stuck in the toilet or in room as they are unable to open these doors by themselves.

I would look into adapting the doors by placing an electronic button system. Where the smaller children and the less able bodied children will be able to press a button and the door will automatically open for them. As it is impossible to loosen the hinges on the door as they will no longer work as intended. If this is not possible when a child needs to exit a room then an adult should always be present to assist. Preventing any accidents from happening, or a fear of getting stuck.

2. Tripping over chair leg in classroom

When children are moving around the classroom it is often an possibility that they could trip over a chair leg. Either from the chair not being placed under a table properly or whilst another child is swinging on their chair. This could be very hazardous as they could fall and hit a side of a table or land badly on the ground.

Add no swinging on your chair and to tuck away chairs properly when not being used onto the classroom rules. I would remind any of the children I see not tucking their chair away to do so, and at the end of class make a check that all chairs are tucked away correctly. I would also do the same with children swinging on their chair; I would ask them not to, and remind them of the class room rules.

3. Slipping on wet floors in the toilets

Before break times and lunch times the children are all asked to go to the toilets and wash their hands. The children have a tendency to drip a large amount of water across the floor when walking over to the hand dryer. Which when you have approximately 30 children at once using the toilets the water can accumulate into a puddle of water, which becomes a slipping hazard.

Allowing only ten children to use the toilets at a time to wash their hands. So that a teaching assistant could maintain the floor with a mop preventing puddles forming, then let the next ten children in once the teaching assistant has vacated. Another option could be before allowing the children out of the class to use the toilet the teacher could remind them to shake the excess water off their hands over the sink before drying their hands. However the procedure they have set in the foundation classes works well where they set up two washing up bowls set within the classroom on tables. The children wash their hands under adult supervision and then dry their hands on towels. Makes it less children rushing through the toilets just to wash their hands.

4. Getting caught up and Tripping over Play bibs

Within foundation the children are allowed out to play within the soft play area during lessons, but only in a group of five. To keep the group to only five children at a time there are five play bibs supplied which they have to wear whilst outside. However when a child wants to come back inside they have to take off the play bib, which then leaves a bib spare for another child to go out.

It works in principle, and keeps the group to only five children at a time. However the children do not maintain putting the bibs back within the box after they are finished and they tend to just throw the play bibs down on the ground. This then becomes a tripping hazard and another child or member of staff could get their feet caught up within the bib and fall over, causing an injury.

A box placed outside seems to be over looked by the children, so I would suggest placing a coat hook within the classroom, at their level by the door that they exit and enter to play outside. Then reaffirm that the play bibs must be hung up when not being used and remind the children when they drop the bib to hang it up or no play for them for the rest of the day.

Offsite Safety

What risk assessments do you need to complete before going of site/ on an outing?

Oakland’s Primary employs an external Risk Assessment company, to carry out the risk assessments on behave of the school. They attend the site of the visit and make an assessment of the risks that may apply and forward the report back to the Head Teacher or Deputy Head Teacher.

The report will be compiled of recommendations based on factors of the trip, and any control measures and contingencies that need to be set in place relating to the risks that could occur.

From the report the school will then set in place the criteria based around the risks, such as:

The age / competence / fitness / usual standard of behaviour of the pupils

Any special educational / medical needs of the pupils

Adult to Child ratios

The competence / experience / qualifications of the adults

Modes of transport, journey routes and location of the visit

The correct attire that may need to be required depended on weather conditions and location of visit.

Any emergency procedures

When there is a less able bodied pupil attending the trip, the leading teacher will take a visit to the site themselves to evaluate the location and the facilities. This is so they can make sure that no child will miss out. They also take a visit to plan activities accordingly and to talk to any personnel that may work within the location of the visit, and to set out a timetable of the activities.

Are the adult: child ratio’s different?

Yes the ratios are different, and these depend on the location of the visit.

What are your roles and responsibilities?

I have done quite a few school trips, some have been to support my son during a school visit and have travelled either via the school mini bus or and in one instance myself and my son travelled by our own means of transport.

When arriving at school we are given the activities schedule and what groups we will be in and the names of the children under our care. We check that all the children have brought everything they need, if not the school does try to provide anything that a child has forgotten or does not own, such a wellingtons, spare clothes etc. We run through the plan before leaving the classroom.

On the mini bus I would support my son, during the journey and help the other two teaching assistants within the mini bus to keep the rest of the children entertained. We normally share out books, maths tasks or we will start some singing. Once we have arrived at the location I am put in charge of a small group of 4 to 5 children which includes my son and I follow one of the leading teachers during the activities.

The last school trip to kingcombe meadows we went hunting within the meadows for wild flowers with a check list, we also caught bugs within nets and did some fishing in the river. I had a small group of 5 children under my care and I helped them with their activities, encouraging them to figure out what bug the found or flower.

I have also helped with a foundation school outing, this was up to the post box outside of the school gate and up the road to post their letters home, as part of their Post Office activities in class. I handed out high-viz vests to every child before we left and was put in charge of three children as we walked in a line up and back to the post box.

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