Bill to repair city's crumbling schools is £20.2m and rising
CRUMBLING city schools need £20.2 million of outstanding repairs, the Post can reveal.
The city council is facing the mounting bill to bring old school buildings up to scratch.
Vital repairs include fixing broken or draughty windows, leaky roofs and old boilers to ensure children are kept warm.
Glenbrook Primary in Bilborough, is faced with a £4,000 a month gas bill to heat the school because of poor window quality.
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It has been promised a new building under the Government's Priority Schools Building Programme.
However this is unlikely to happen until 2016 – not soon enough for acting head teacher Anna Grant-Thomas.
She said: "We are in a 1940s building, which tends to cost a lot in maintenance work.
"We did have had a completely new roof recently, which was nice, but we have metal window frames which have warped and let all of the heat out, hence our large gas bill.
"We also have suffered from vandalism, with people smashing our windows on occasion. This also costs money to repair.
"We have had new pipework as well, while our playground and car park are an issue as there are big potholes which need repairing."
Mrs Grant-Thomas added: "It is a costly business here right now.
"Money is being spent which could instead have been going to the children's education. But we have to keep them safe."
The repair bills figure was revealed by the council under the Freedom of Information law.
The Government announced last month that the city is to receive £2.9 million for maintenance work in 2013-14 – suggesting the current bill could rise.
Councillor David Mellen, portfolio holder for children's services at the council, said he wasn't surprised at the amount of repairs outstanding.
He said: "We have 60 schools on our books, most of which need maintenance work doing.
"When you take things like replacing light fittings, especially in a secondary school, this can run into the thousands of pounds. So it all adds up.
"The schools due money – like Glenbrook and Springfield Primary in Bulwell – urgently need rebuilds.
"We have to prioritise which schools are most in need of repair work."
Springfield Primary is set to get a rebuild at the same time as Glenbrook.
Head teacher Jane-Belinda Francis has also said it can't come soon enough and added they had a "1930s school here which is not fit for purpose."
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