Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

School Is Set to Stay Shut

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

School Is Set to Stay Shut

Article excerpt

Byline: Dave Robson Senior Reporter

A SCHOOL built on dodgy ground won't reopen any time soon after building work was suspended, parents have learned.

South Bank Primary School, which only opened in 2006, has been closed since last summer because of structural problems caused by ground fill material beneath the building.

For the 2014/15 school year, the school's 200-plus pupils have been taught at the old Teesville Infants site while PFI contractor Carillion worked to rectify the problems. But that work has now been suspended following confirmation that most of the foundations were built on "defective fill".

Yesterday, parents and carers were called into school to be told the work has been halted while a report is compiled.

The school and Redcar and Cleveland Council are awaiting the report to decide what action will be required.

But it means that when school resumes in September, the children will probably still be at Teesville - and possibly for much longer.

Headteacher Helen Hall said: "While the school is very settled, and the children continue to be challenged academically to achieve their potential, the school community needs a long-term solution.

"Staff, children and parents are making the best of some very difficult circumstances and we remain positive. However, this would be so much easier to manage if the school's future had an agreed long-term resolution."

But the situation is testing parents' patience, with one telling The Gazette: "Apparently they haven't been doing work for 10 weeks because of the stuff it was built on.

"It's been nearly a year since the kids moved out. They were meant to go back after the six weeks holiday but now they're saying it might be September 2016. It's not the teachers' fault, but the news didn't go down too well. …

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