Advice on the organisation of the room with systems and processes, including health and safety
Having planned the layout of the room, the new Food technology teacher now needs to maximise its potential. Aspects they should consider are:
- How many pupils will work in each area?
- Which pupils will use each cooker?
- Which sinks will pupils have access to?
- Where will basic equipment be stored?
- The cleaning routine and responsibilities for this is a further consideration. Mentors will have their own cleaning routines and should be able to give ideas to the new teacher.
- Cleaning of fridges and freezers
- Checking on temperatures
- Checking equipment
- Maintenance of storage areas
Discussion with school cleaners will involve:
- Cleaning of sinks
- Cleaning of worktops
- Mopping of floors
- Disposal of food waste, re-cyclable items and other rubbish
Equipment stored in each area:
Many schools ensure each drawer and cupboard, contain exactly the same equipment. Lists and pictures should be attached for pupils to check at the end of each lesson, to ensure everything is back in place.
Designated storage cupboards and shelves
Some schools designate certain cupboards for certain equipment. E.g. all saucepans are found in Cupboard 1. All baking trays are found in cupboard 2. etc. These cupboards should be clearly labelled.
Other schools use a trolley system, whereby all equipment required for the lesson is put out on trolleys – to which they are returned after use. Equipment is checked in by the technician at the end of each lesson. This method is particularly useful, where there is a shortage of storage space around the room. It also means that equipment can be shared between more than one Food Technology room.
Whichever method the Food Technology teacher chooses to adopt, it most important that the storage space for each piece of equipment is clearly labelled. Photographs of the cupboard or drawer and its contents help all pupils.
Health & Safety
There are very strict regulations regarding Food Safety, to which all teachers of Food Technology subjects must adhere.
When planning and conducting design and technological activities, trainees and teachers must give due regard to the health and safety of their pupils, themselves and other adults. They must be aware of current relevant health and safety responsibilities, legislation and liability.
It is crucial that teachers and support staff can identify the hazards and assess the risks, and determine how to remove or control the risks within an educational environment. The Health and Safety Training Standards and the D&T Association’s Health & Safety Accreditation Scheme havebeen introduced to provide a sound professional framework so that staff can feel confident in carrying out their work in a professional manner, and be able to show evidence of meeting that requirement.
The Health and Safety Training Standards cover the subject, including minimum expectations for trainees and qualified design and technology teachers:
Three levels of accreditation:
- Core level - for all trainees and teachers involved in teaching Design and Technology.
- Specialist levels - relate to each of the four fields of knowledge, for example Food Technology. Trainees and teachers are expected to demonstrate this level if they are to teach in a specialist field of knowledge, for trainees the minimum expectation is for two of the four specialist areas to be covered.
- Specialist Extension levels - are not part of the minimum requirements for trainee teachers. However before using these specialist pieces of equipment, and/or processes, can be used suitable training is required.
Teacher Accreditation Scheme (includes HLTA/Technicians)
The scheme is available to all parts of the UK and the standards are compatible with Health and Safety for Design and Technology in Schools and Similar Establishments BS 4163 : 2007 which recommends that all staff working in Design and Technology and related areas can show that they meet the standards.
The cost for initial accreditationis £25 per person, payable to the D&T Association - accreditation for subsequent additional awards is £10.00.
Initial accreditation is for 5 years and the scheme maintains a database and record keeping system that will inform all accredited persons of significant changes to regulations. There is no legal requirement to meet these Health and Safety standards, but the D&T Association believes that all teachers and support staff should be accredited as part of their professional development. If an individual, governing body or LA decides not to use the standards it could be necessary to prove in a court of law that any safety measures they have in place are at least as stringent as the nationally laid down standards.
D&T Association Accreditation and Certification
Training is carried out by one of the D&T Association's Registered Design and Technology Health and Safety Consultants (RDTHSC). A list of consultants in your area willing to assess HLTAs is available on the D&T Association website – H&S section. As part of the HLTA training it will be more cost effective for a group to be assessed together after they have completed their Level 2 Food Hygiene.
On completion of the training the RDTHSC will determine which areas are to be accredited and a certificate of accreditation can then be obtained from the D&T Association. See the Health and Safety section on and essential publications available for schools:
- Health and Safety Training Standards in D&T
- BS 4163:2007 Health and safety for design and technology
- Risk Assessment in Secondary School D&T
- Risk assessment forms
Health and Safety Executive
Risk assessments – CLEAPSS
CLEAPPS is an organisation that supports practical science and technology in schools and colleges. The majority of schools are members of CLEAPPS and can access a wide range of model risk assessments for a variety of food based activities.
Food hygiene training
It is not a legal requirement for a secondary food teacher to hold a recognised and up to date food hygiene/safety qualification. However, some LAs (or a school’s own policy) may ask their teachers or a teacher in the school to have this.
Having a food safety certificate can:
•Make you feel more confident about cooking safely in your classroom
•Help ensure you have considered all possible risks
•Help ensure you demonstrate best practice
•Be useful to include in your risk assessment
•Add to your CPD.
The D&T Association regards a food hygiene qualification as an essential part of overall health and safety training and accreditation.
D&T Association – Teaching Food Safely
The 1 day course is aimed at everyone who teaches and supportsprimaryand secondary food technology, home economics or catering or who lead cookery clubs or food activities in schools.
This includes:teachers, technicians, teaching assistants/higher level teaching assistants, trainee teachers, and special needs support staff.
Courses provide delegates with Level 2 Food Safety Accreditation, full training on safe food handling, hygiene & storage as well as guidance and documentation to enable you to carry out risk assessments. The course covers:
- Training and accreditation for D&T Association National Health and Safety Scheme. Accreditation for specialist food technology – compatible with Health and Safety for Design and Technology in Educational and Similar Establishments BS 4163: 2014.
- Risk assessment guidance, samples and models and the key publications that you need for H&S in your school.
- Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering
Level 2 Award in Food Safety in Catering courses are also run by Local Authorities and training consultants registered with the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health and the Royal Society for Public Health. These courses are often face to face, 6 hour training courses with a multiple choice exam and the end. Alternatively, the Level 2 qualification can also be gained through an online course such as those run by Highfield Publications,
The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health -
The Royal Society for Public Health -
Highfield Publications -
The following basic rules should be followed by everyone in the Food Technology room:
- Always wash your hands before handling food – failure to do so could cause cross contamination and food poisoning.
- Wear a clean apron, remove jumpers and roll up long sleeves.
- Remove rings, watches and nail polish and tie back long hair
- Use separate chopping boards when preparing foods that could get cross contaminated. Ideally use a red board for raw meat.
- Store food at the correct temperature.
- Check the sell by date on any food you are using.
- Store raw meat away from cooked meat on the bottom shelf of the fridge, as Juices may drip and cause cross contamination.
- Throw out old and out of date equipment.
- Wash tea towels and dish cloths regularly, as dirty ones could transfer bacteria onto clean appliances.
- Wash your hands after touching high risk foods such as poultry and raw meat.
- Do not touch electrical appliances with wet hands.
- Mop up all spills immediately
- Do not leave saucepan handles sticking out on the cooker.
- Always use oven gloves when handling hot equipment.
- Do not leave wires/cables trailing across a surface.
- Take care when using sharp knives.
- Do not overload sockets with electrical appliances.
Be aware of the problems of cross contamination
- Prevent raw and cooked foods touching each other:
- Do not allow meat to drip onto other foods as this will contaminate the food.
- Prevent bacteria from being transferred on hands, chopping boards, surfaces and other utensils.
- The Danger Zone is between 5°C and 63°C. This is the temperature zone in which bacteria reproduce fastest.
- High risk food should be stored below 5°C (good practice temperature). The legal temperature for cold food storage is below 8°C.
- Food should be cooked thoroughly and defrosted properly or bacteria may not be killed.
- If using a food probe, food should be cooked to a core temperature of 75°C for an immediate reading or at least 70°C for 2 minutes.
- If re-heating food, the core temperature should reach at least 75°C.
The information provided in this guidance note is provided under the Open Government Licence. Terms can be found at: This resource was developed for the DfE Teach Food Technology programme.