Almost 300 pupils will be returning to an Oldbury primary school two weeks later than planned as building work during the holidays has over-run by a fortnight leaving parents furious.
Pupils in Year 1 to Year 5 at the 366-pupil Brandhall Primary School will return for the new academic year on September 23 rather than September 9.
A total of 280 children will be affected by the closure.
Pupils in reception and year six will start as usual on September 9 and be based in the children’s centre at the site.
Sandwell’s education boss, Councillor Simon Hackett, today said he was ‘bitterly disappointed’ that work had not been completed on time and added that it had been carried out between the school and a private contractor, with no council involvement.
The project has involved asbestos removal, a power upgrade and work on heating. Parents only received letters informing them of the news on Thursday and will now need to secure alternative childcare for an extra fortnight.
Single parent Tracy Calver, whose daughter Abi Rozier, aged nine, attends the Brennand Road school, said: “It is just very frustrating to receive a letter like this. It is incredibly short notice to tell us that the kids will be off for an extra two weeks.”
The 34-year-old teaching assistant who works at Bristnall Hall Academy said: “I work at a school and I’m back this week. I had sorted out childcare for this week, but beyond that I don’t know what I’m going to do. I haven’t got any family nearby to help me out, and I can’t take Abi with me to work.
“I’m not sure what I’m meant to do.”
Ms Calver who lives on Beverley Court Road, Quinton, added: “When Abi’s been off for illness I have received letters from the school about her attendance, so it makes me very angry that they can extend the school’s holidays like this.”
Councillor Hackett said: “I am bitterly disappointed that the work has not been completed on time by the contractor which has caused massive disruption and misery to many parents.
“This was work undertaken between the school and a private contractor that has over-run. The council was not involved.
“As a result the governing body has closed the school for children in Years 1 to 5 until the work is completed.
“Reception children and year six children can resume school on the normal date as they can be taught in a separate part of the school that is unaffected by the building work.”
He said the children will get home learning packs until they can return.