School re­pairs to start on leaky build­ings

Auckland City Harbour News - - News - By Lisa Har­ri­son

Schools faced with leaky build­ing prob­lems are ea­gerly await­ing the start of re­pair work.

San­dring­ham’s Eden­dale Pri­mary and Mt Al­bert Gram­mar School are among four Auck­land schools iden­ti­fied as hav­ing leaky build­ing syn­drome ear­lier this year.

Three Eden­dale blocks built be­tween 1994 and 1998 are af­fected, in­clud­ing the school li­brary. Prob­lems were dis­cov­ered five years ago and chil­dren have been deal­ing with class­rooms that leak on rainy days ever since.

The school has gained con­sents for build­ing work to be­gin and is looking at quotes from con­trac­tors.

Prin­ci­pal Rose­mary Vivien says she will be re­lieved to see the work be­gin.

The leaky build­ing prob­lem has be­come a fo­cus for the school, with chil­dren com­plet­ing projects on the sub­ject.

“It’s good for the chil­dren to be able to un­der­stand and talk about it,” she says.

“We will be do­ing a unit on build­ing and they will be able to see how the re­pair process works.”

Mt Al­bert Gram­mar School is also pre­par­ing for work to start on an eight-year-old class­room block show­ing signs of leaky build­ing syn­drome.

Its 24 class­rooms and a toi­let block are af­fected.

Prin­ci­pal Dale Bur­den says the Ed­u­ca­tion Min­istry has been work­ing with the school to as­sess the ex­tent of the dam­age and re­pairs should be­gin in 2009 and take about a year.

He says while there are no health and safety risks, af­ter heavy rain the rooms need to be aired and it has been in­con­ve­nient for staff and stu­dents.

He is con­fi­dent the work will not af­fect the day-to-day run­ning of the school.

“We will stage the re­pairs in such a way that there will be no dis­rup­tion to the stu­dents,” he says.

The Ed­u­ca­tion Min­istry’s north­ern re­gion man­ager of net­work pro­vi­sion, Ray Webb, says it is com­mit­ted to en­sur­ing the build­ings are re­paired or re­placed to a suit­able stan­dard.

“At the mo­ment, the min­istry is work­ing through the de­sign and build­ing con­sent stages of the process,” Mr Webb says.

“Once th­ese hur­dles have been cleared we will be in a good po­si­tion to con­firm a time­frame for build­ing work to start.”

Both schools will have tem­po­rary mea­sures in place dur­ing the re­pair or re­place­ment process to al­low them to op­er­ate without us­ing the af­fected build­ings.

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