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Home   Gravesend   News   Article

Westcourt Primary School in Silver Road, Gravesend, without proper heating ‘until summer’

21 March 2014
by Thom Morris

Westcourt Primary School in Silver Road has been without heating since February and Kent County Council is now having to monitor temperatures provided by short-term oil-filled radiators.

The situation is not expected to be resolved until July because works will take longer than two weeks and cannot be completed over the Easter holiday.

However, it said hot water was still available at the school.

Westcourt Primary School, Silver Road, Gravesend.

Westcourt Primary School, Silver Road, Gravesend.

Anna-Louise Shenton created an online petition saying: “Westcourt hasn’t had hot water and heating since before half-term.

“The children didn’t go back to school as planned on February 17 because of this and stayed off school an extra two days.

“Not being told if there was still a problem all the children went back.

“Another two days later a text was sent out about the school still having heating issues.

“There is still no heating or hot water, instead they have Calor gas and oil heaters in classrooms.

“Children have been complaining of feeling ill.”

“Oil-filled radiators were supplied, but the existing electricity supply could not cope with them all being switched on when the school kitchen was in operation, and this led to further problems."

She added: “To make matters worse Kent County Council has said it will not be fixing this problem until July.

“The council can’t expect children from the age of three to be in school with no heating or hot water until July.”

Another parent said: “My youngest has been suffering from chest pains because of his asthma because of this situation.

“We had a parents evening the other day and even I felt faint coming out of there.”

The heating system at Westcourt includes an under-floor pipe which developed three leaks, leading to water escaping in the hall and a classroom.

A KCC spokesman said: “Our contractors tried to provide a temporary fix during the half-term break, but this proved impossible and the school was closed for two days, which was most unfortunate.

“Oil-filled radiators were supplied, but the existing electricity supply could not cope with them all being switched on when the school kitchen was in operation, and this led to further problems.

“We understand that the school endeavoured to keep parents informed of the situation during this period.”

The school is using a mix of Calor gas and oil-filled radiators. KCC said temperatures throughout the school were monitored regularly.

You can view the petition here.

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