School work continues during Easter break with £47m maintenance programme
Planned works ranging from repairs and maintenance to upgrades will be taking place at 35 schools and nurseries during the Easter holidays as part of a major £47m maintenance programme.
Improvements include roof repairs, lighting and ceiling upgrades, installing new boilers, stonework repairs and redecorating kitchen and dining halls.
The programme is significantly larger than in previous years as a direct result of decisions in the past two budgets for additional investment in the Council estate with the majority of the work taking place in schools. In total the Council is investing £119m over the five years of the project.
Many of the works will address backlog maintenance requirements identified through condition surveys carried out across the estate. In some schools, refurbishment has already started as part of a two year programme with work continuing throughout the school year including at evenings and weekends. All primary schools currently identified as being in a poor condition are included in the programme.
Specific examples of work taking place at Easter include:
• £2.1m at Echline Primary School on window, door, lighting, roof and rainwater improvements (started Jan 2019 with completion due Nov 2019)
• £1.46m at Gracemount Primary school on upgrades to the roof, lighting, heating and floors (started Oct 2018 with completion due Nov 2019)
• £1.42m at Queensferry Primary and Nursery School on upgrades to windows, doors, lighting, toilets and the school kitchen (started Jan 2019 with completion due Nov 2019).
The Council’s Capital Investment Programme will continue alongside the Easter break planned works including some rising rolls projects that will provide additional early years capacity across the city as the Council plans for the additional 1,140 hours of early learning and childcare by 2020.
Investment in the Council’s education estate continues with six new schools (primary, secondary and special) due to open in the next few years and a further five high schools identified for replacement as part of the Council’s £207m Wave 4 programme.
Councillor Ian Perry, Education Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “We’re making huge strides towards bringing our whole school estate up to a good condition. The Council is investing £119m over five years on a major works programme across the city to improve the quality of our buildings.
“Education is a top priority for the administration and upgrading and improving our schools is just one strand of work to deliver the best education possible in our communities.”
Councillor Alison Dickie, Education Vice Convener for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “We’re committed to delivering for all children and families in Edinburgh by improving their lives and futures through the creation of a first-class learning and teaching environment that is inclusive for all our young people.
“The holiday periods give us a great opportunity to focus on school maintenance without causing disruption in the classroom and we’ve made sure this investment is delivered in a smart way. While we’re organising as much work as possible outside of term time, the size of our school investment programme means many of our schools will have work continuing in evenings and weekends throughout the year. I am hugely conscious of how this impacts on schools and I am grateful to our wonderful Head Teachers for their organisational efforts to ensure continued excellence in learning. Work will continue until the job is done.”