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Fury as school closed by flooding is still shut weeks later

By Richard Guttridge | Oldbury | News | Published:

Furious parents have hit out at the 'unacceptable' decision of a primary school to place children at five different schools across Sandwell after it was closed due to flooding.

Causeway Green Primary School. Credit: https://causeway.sch.life/

Causeway Green School in Oldbury has been forced to resort to the extreme step as work to repair damage is taking longer than expected.

But it has thrown parents' plans into chaos - with some having multiple children placed at different schools, forcing them to make several trips across the borough and take time off work.

The school day will also finish earlier, at 2.30pm and 1pm on Fridays, to avoid overcrowding, adding a further headache for working parents.

The school in Penncricket Lane suffered major damage following flash flooding last month. It had been expected to reopen after half-term but remains shut. It is not known when it will fully reopen.

Children have not attended school for three weeks and parents have been left dismayed by the temporary solution of placing different year groups at schools elsewhere in Sandwell.

Casey Byrne has seen her three children, aged nine, seven and six, each placed at different schools, Perryfields Primary School, the Q3 Academy and Brandhall Primary School.

Terrible planning

The school kitchen assistant, 28, said: "I don't drive so I have got to take public transport. I have already had to take unpaid leave from work which is putting added stress on finances.

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"Each year group is at a different school. I don't know why they have decided to do it like that when a lot of children at the school have siblings.

"I think it has been terribly planned. Personally, I would have got teachers and parents together to do a walking bus to the schools they are going to.

"On Friday they might as well not go to school. I have to get the first one out early so I can get to the others."

Gemma Phipps has found herself in a similar situation, with thee children at different schools.

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She said: "I am astounded that the local council and the school itself believe that the reasonable alternative under these circumstances is to not only send all three of my children to different schools but to also amend the school hours."

Councillor Simon Hackett, cabinet member for children’s services, said: "Staff have worked tirelessly on fixing the damage caused by extensive flooding. However it became apparent repairs were taking longer than first expected.

"We are very proud of how our schools and academies have pulled together to make sure the children from Causeway Green are back in education.”

“The council has agreed to provide a coach to deliver and collect children to and from their host schools for larger families with three or more children."

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Chief Reporter - @RichG_star

Chief Reporter for the Express & Star, based in Wolverhampton.

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