Campus shut to end of year
The troubled £28 million North West Community Campus is likely to be closed for the rest of the year.
In a letter to parents, campus operational manager Barry Graham said safety checks and work to fix problems isn’t due to be finished by December.
He said the council would re-open the Dumfries site when it had “full confidence” in the building.
He added: “We have been advised by Hub South West and Graham that, due to their programme of remedial work and the independent checks required, the school will not be ready for pupils and staff to return after the October holidays and it is likely that the time for the decant will extend to the new year.”
He asked them to be “patient and resilient” while pupils continue to be sent to schools across the town for classes.
Council leader Elaine Murray said she understands parents and pupils will be frustrated at the delay, but that the school – which closed on September 7 after a white board fell from a wall and hit a four-yearold nursery pupil on the head – shouldn’t re-open until it is “delivered to the gold standard level we were promised”.
The letter was sent before a crisis meeting at St Ninian’s Primary on Tuesday to discuss the fact that some children are having to go to three different schools a day.
Mum Alison Roberts, one of the organisers behind the summit – which was attended by around 160 people – said the arrangements were making it hard for pupils to prepare for prelims. She added: “The resources are not in place right now for the kids to learn. The senior pupils have prelims and if they’re saying that they’re going back in January, there are prelims on the ninth.
“They are not teaching the kids the full curriculum at the moment because they lack the resources to do it. The SQA say they will make allowances, but what allowances? They’re not willing to expand on that and the kids will still have to sit the tests at the same time.”
MSP Finlay Carson said the big turnout of parents and pupils at the meeting “highlights the serious issues still being experienced by pupils on a daily basis”.
He added: “A portable cabin campus for the seniors was talked about weeks ago. With the NWC campus now not opening until the new year this should be put in place as soon as possible.”
Gold standard Elaine Murray wants promises to be met