Will schools in Liverpool close due to UK heatwave? Latest on school closures after red weather warning

Weather experts at the Met Office have warned that temperatures could reach record highs in Liverpool as a first ever red alert for extreme heat has been issued. LiverpoolWorld has you covered with all the latest information as of Tuesday, 19 July.

The Met Office has issued a first ever red weather warning for extreme heat, covering the Merseyside region.

The country has been in the midst a heatwave that has brought high-tempered temperatures of mid-to-high 20°C since it began on Thursday, 7 July.

Recent forecasts from experts have resulted in stark warnings that temperatures could exceed 40°C, with Sunday, 17 July, expected to be the UK’s hottest ever day.

Sandy Crosby Beach near Liverpool on a sunny day. Unusual hot summer in Great Britain. This is the North West Coast of England, United Kingdom

Liverpudulians may be worrying about the drastic impact the expected soaring temperatures after the weekend could have on various facets of society, such as schools.

Children are more easily susceptible to heatstroke than adults and in-turn need more care and attention in these conditions, so will Liverpool schools close as a result of the heatwave? Here is everything you need to know.

What Met Office weather warning is in place in Liverpool?

Initially, the city of Liverpool and region of Merseyside were covered by an amber warning for extreme heat.

However, as of Friday, 15 July 2022, a first ever red alert for extreme heat has taken its place and covers most of England - reaching as far as St Helens, but Liverpool remains on amber alert at the time of writing.

It will start on Sunday, 17 July at midnight whilst extending out to Tuesday, 19 July at 11:59 pm.

Will Liverpool schools close due to the heatwave?

Even though schools in Scotland have already broken up for the summer holidays, those in England and Wales remain open at least for one further week.

Despite this, there is no specific law concerning school closures during heatwaves, so the question as to whether any in Liverpool will shut its doors to beat the heat is still unclear.

It is understood that this decision will be made by either local authorities or specific schools.

The Department for Education (DfE) issued the following statement: “We aren’t advising schools to close during high temperatures, but school leaders should make sure they take any steps necessary to make sure children are safe and comfortable.”

LiverpoolWorld contacted Liverpool City Council to ask if any plans are in place to close any schools in the city as a result of hotter-than-usual temperatures forecasted at the beginning of next week.

A spokesperson issued the following comment: “Today is the last day of term for many schools in Liverpool.

“However, if schools took the decision not to open due to the heat that decision would be made by individual schools. At the moment we are not aware that any schools intend to close.

“The council has also shared NHS advice with schools on keeping safe in the heat.”

How hot does it have to be in a Liverpool classroom before pupils can leave?

A specific temperature that a school or education centre has to reach for it to be deemed ‘unsafe’, therefore allowing pupils and teachers to leave has not been confirmed by the government.

This is not despite efforts to implement such a ruling, with the Trade Union Congress (TUC) releasing a briefing that highlighted the temperatures that it believes should be maintained in various workplaces.

It states that a maximum of 30C should be set, with the aim to keep them below 24C.