Head’s building work nightmare

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UNFINISHED building work at a primary school has left staff picking up the pieces, according to a headteacher.

Maria Curry, headteacher at Elveden Primary School, said incomplete building work organised by Suffolk County Council meant staff had to pick up the slack to ensure pupils had adequate facilities.

She said: “I am meant to be securing high standards for the children of Elveden, not chasing around after workmen, contractors and local authority personnel so that all the work is finished.”

Work on extensioning primary schools in the area was carried out over the summer as part of Suffolk County Council’s Schools Organisational Review (SOR).

As part of the review, primary schools are being extended to accommodate Year 5 this year, with Year 6 due to be taken on next year.

But without building work finished, Elveden Primary was left scrambling to get ready for a busy school year.

Ms Curry said: “We had to come back the weekend before the children were due back and I had staff cleaning and working on the site -– it’s not a very good start.”

The incomplete work on the school includes a walkway between a new classroom, which will house reception classes, and library facilities.

Builders told Ms Curry that there had been no plans to finish the walkway by the start of term – the opposite of the county council’s promise of work being completed by September.

Ms Curry added that work by the staff had been done ‘behind the scenes’ and had avoided any disruption to teaching.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council said it was working to rectify the problems.

“The county council has worked in partnership with both the school and the contractor to ensure that any outstanding issues are resolved as quickly as possible.

“The contractor and school have now agreed dates for the completion of this work which has not had any direct impact on the teaching areas provided,” she said.

The incomplete work will now be finished in the first week of October.