Fire safety in schools: guidance

Understand guidance on fire safety in schools, including fire alarms, soft furnishings and staff training, and read expert advice from the London Fire Brigade and Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service.

Last reviewed on 31 May 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 12988
  1. You must carry out risk assessments on all buildings
  2. Fire-fighting and detection equipment
  3. Fire safety training for staff
  4. Fire safety guidance on soft furnishings in classrooms
  5. Fire alarms and monitoring systems

All maintained schools, academies, independent schools, non-maintained special schools and pupil referral units (PRUs) must have up-to-date premises management documents, including policies on fire safety and statutory testing (see the 'Premises management documents' section of the DfE’s guidance on statutory policies for schools).

Download our premises management model policy from another of our articles.

You must carry out risk assessments on all buildings

For existing buildings, this means determining the precautions needed to protect occupants and enable a safe means of escape in the case of fire.

In particular, schools must:

  • Ensure procedures are in place to reduce the likelihood of fire
  • Maintain fire detection and alarm systems
  • Ensure staff and pupils are familiar with emergency evacuation procedures

Learn more about fire risk assessments, and download templates you can use from our article on fire risk assessment.

Building work on all new schools must "comply with the building regulations enforced by local building-control bodies".