With heavy snowfall across London today, many children have woken up and wondered whether this means school is cancelled today.

So what does it take for school to be cancelled? Well the biggest consideration is whether children can get to school safely or not.

It’s not just students but also whether staff can get to school either, which is a larger catchment area since staff often live further away than the kids.

You also have to consider whether the site itself is safe, such as whether the playground has turned into an ice rink or the temperature in the school is too low, which can result in broken plumbing. You don’t want to go to a school with broken toilets.

It’s not just if you wake up one morning and there’s snow outside either, as an extremely bad weather forecast could prompt the school to decide it’s not worth the risk.

The final decision is ultimately made by the head teacher, as they are the ones who know their own school and the surrounding area as well as the Department for Education guidelines.

In extreme circumstances the borough council can order a blanket closure of all the community schools in the area, but this would not cover academies.