Walsall school forced to close due to unpaid bills and asks families for donations

Parents of pupils at a Walsall school forced to close because of unpaid bills have been asked to contribute to reconnect its electricity and internet supplies.

Abu Bakr Girls School, Walsall. Photo: Google
Abu Bakr Girls School, Walsall. Photo: Google

The Abu Bakr Girls School, which is based on Shelley Campus, Scarborough Road, sent a letter to parents explaining why the school was forced to close on Tuesday. In it, the school said the site no longer had access to electricity and heating as a result of the substantial utility bill.

The letter went onto ask that each family donated £200 to help contribute towards the unpaid energy bill.

The Primary School is also hoping to raise funds after the internet access was turned off, but the school has remained open.

Letter from Abu Bakr School addressed to parents asking for £200 donation per family

In the letter addressed to parents, the school said: "As shared in the meeting yesterday, in order to pay the outstanding utility bill, we would require the total amount of £55,086.81. However, we are aware that there will be reconnection charges and possibly an advanced payment. Unfortunately, we have contacted the supplier this morning and they are unwilling to hold any discussion about reconnection until payment is received.

"Last night it was suggested if £150 could be donated per pupil we would be able to raise the funds needed to reconnect the electricity and begin the Girls School again and reconnect the internet in the Primary and Boys Schools.

"However, we have given this suggestion some thought and feel that for some parents this would be quite challenging where there are two, three or more children attending our schools from one family. Therefore, we are requesting a donation of £200 per family in order to make the full payment required."

The letter goes on to give the bank account details of the school, or also welcomes cash payments to be given at the Primary School.

Letter from Abu Bakr School addressed to parents

In a previous letter addressed to parents on Monday it stated that the Girls School would be closing from Tuesday and an urgent parent meeting was to be held on the same day at the primary school. It also added that a total of £60,000 was needed to be raised to cover the cost of the reconnection.

Mr Dawood Rashid, admin for Abu Bakr Trust: "The Girls School is temporarily closed due to an unpaid energy bill.

"The pupils are currently doing online classes at the moment until the school reopens.

"The teachers are based in the other schools and at home in order to do the online classes with pupils.

"We are hoping to reopen as soon as possible once the outstanding bills have been paid.

"Every family has pledged to support the trust and help raise funds in order to help the school. We have currently raised £3,500 on the Gofundme page, and have also raised funds separately through donations but we do not know exactly how much we raised yet."

According to the school's website, it says that the girls school was established in 2000, and is for girls from age 11 to 16.

A gofundme page has also been set up by the trust, where it states that a target of £60,000 has been set - as of now, £3,517 has been raised via 118 donations.

A person who did not wish to be named but has an association with the school said: "It is wrong what they are doing asking the parents to donate this money.

"They know that the funds will be raised due to parents being scared that their children not being able to take their GCSE exams, and so they're taking advantage of them.

"This fundraising is on top of the already annual fees that parents pay to send their kids to the school."

The school is part of the Abu Bakr Trust, which was formed in 1998, and it currently runs:

Abu Bakr Nursery

Abu Bakr Primary

Abu Bakr Girls School

The trust also previously ran the Abu Bakr Boys School, but the disused building was found to have a cannabis farm inside after a police raid in June 2022.

Abu Bakr Girls School has been contacted for comment.

Most Read

Most Read

Top Stories

More from the Express & Star

UK & International News