Express & Star

Health of pupils at Dudley school that's 'diabolical wreck' put 'at risk' by unfit building

A leaking roof and temperatures that are either freezing or too hot are just two of the challenges facing staff and children at a rundown Dudley school.

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Every available space is used to store equipment

The headteacher of Pens Meadow School says its Ridge Hill site in Wordsley is so out of date and overcrowded that the health of its pupils is at risk.

The school provides education for children with complex and profound learning difficulties including autism, but the shabby site is no longer fit for purpose and a promised replacement cannot come soon enough.

Pens Meadow headteacher, Marie Hunter, said: “The corridors are narrow, there is no storage, we have one outside play area for 70 children, the bathroom facilities are inadequate, the dinner hall is also the assembly hall and is in the centre of the building so is actually a corridor.

“It was built as a junior training centre so it doesn’t have any of the things you would associate with a modern special school.”

Poor ventilation means classrooms heat up fast in the summer but in the winter cold is a risk. The boiler failed last year and a temporary system was set up which has already broken down twice.

Mrs Hunter said: “The heat just builds and builds, we can’t introduce mobile air conditioning units because the rooms aren’t suitable and in the winter it is freezing because it is all single glazed and single skin bricks.