Tens of Thousands of Students Face Remote Learning After Unsafe Classrooms
The Education Secretary, Gillian Keegan, has come under pressure to release a full list of schools containing potentially crumbling concrete. This follows the announcement that yesterday, 104 schools were deemed to have critical levels of the lightweight reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC). This guidance has left heads and parents demanding answers, as they argue that this issue has been known for years.
Parents and Schools Demand Immediate Disclosure
Concerned parents and school leaders are now pressing the government to reveal the identities of the affected schools as a matter of urgency. They argue that with just days left before the start of term, it is vital to have transparency and clarity about this precarious situation.
Partial or Full Remote Learning Imminent
The impact of the crumbling concrete will force many schools to adopt partial or fully remote learning. Education Minister Nick Gibb has stated that the complete list of affected schools will be published once parents have been informed and arrangements made for the schools and students affected.
A History of Crumbling Concrete
This recent situation follows a roof collapse at a school in Stevenage in 2018, where the cause was identified as the RAAC. Councillor Kevin Bentley, leader of Essex Council, expressed frustration and grave concern, particularly as multiple schools in the area are believed to be affected.
Union Blames Government Incompetence
The National Education Union's general secretary, Daniel Kebede, has criticized the government for their incompetence, branding the situation as "absolutely disgraceful." Kebede argues that it is deeply troubling that 104 schools have only just discovered that their buildings are unsafe and cannot be used, a few days before the start of term.