RAAC updated list: number of schools in England where at-risk concrete has been found in building rises to 174
The Department for Education has published an updated list of school where the collapse-risk reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete has been found with almost 30 more schools identified
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The number of schools with buildings which were found to contain RAAC has risen from 147 to 174. The material has been highlighted as being at risk of collapse, with school buildings across the country closed as a result of the updated advice.
The original list was published in the first week of September, as millions of pupils in England returned to term after the summer break.
As pupils returned, four schools were forced to revert to distance learning and ditch face-to-face learning completely due to the buildings being deemed unsafe, while another 20 introduced partial distance learning for some pupils. The DfE has now said that 148 of the 174 schools from the updated list are continuing to offer full time, face-to-face learning for all pupils.
Education Secretary Gillian Keegan said: “We are taking a cautious approach so every parent in England can be reassured their child is safe in their school. School and local leaders deserve huge credit for making sure the vast majority of settings with confirmed Raac are continuing to offer pupils face-to-face learning – including all of the 147 schools initially identified two weeks ago.
“We will continue to work closely with affected schools and provide both expert and financial support to minimise disruption and keep staff and children safe.”
MPs are due to question the Department for Education over the new updated list.
Education Committee chairman Robin Walker said: “Both I and my cross-party colleagues have heard loudly and clearly the distress and anxiety that this crisis is causing to families and staff at the 100 or more schools that are affected by Raac. We share the feeling of urgency to establish how this situation developed, how and when it can be resolved, and what lessons need to be learnt.
“We look forward to questioning the minister and officials with oversight of capital expenditure on education settings, and testing the Government on its answers to those vital questions.”