Safety measures after disabled pupil died in playground fall
A SCHOOL where a tragic playground accident led to the death of a 15-yearold disabled pupil has installed fencing to improve safety.
Muhammed Ghafoor, who had severe learning difficulties and was confined to a wheelchair, died at Birmingham Children’s Hospital in September 2016 within days of falling down a set of playground steps at Mayfield School in Lozells.
A subsequent inquest ruled that his death was an accident but had been contributed to by neglect after it was heard that he was left momentarily unattended.
The special educational needs school has now confirmed that last month fencing was put up around the playground and chicanes installed on the outside stairwells to improve safety.
Interim headteacher Simon Harris, who arrived at the school earlier this year, said: “Ultimately my remit is to keep children safe and reduce the risk they are exposed to. The fence was a major part of that.
“We are desperately trying to move forward.
“A lot of staff were affected by what happened and the fence is one way of showing them we are taking steps to improve safety.
“We are dealing with vulnerable young children and we have to ensure they are kept safe.”
In recent weeks a planning application was submitted to Birmingham City Council to install further fencing alongside a running strip at a different part of the site on Wheeler Street, which is also shared by Lozells primary and Holte secondary schools.
A design and access statement said: “The schoolyard extends over a ground on different levels.
“The existing security mesh fencing follows the site boundary but allows access to the steepest areas between the playground and the boundary.
“To ensure a safe environment is needed (sic) to install a new security mesh fencing that protects children from falling.”