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Questions raised over structural problems

T.N. Tatem teachers and staff didn't turn up yesterday in protest at ongoing mould issues at the school (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Former member of the School Reorganisation Committee, Danielle Riviere, has questioned the extent of structural problems across the island’s middle schools after the closure of T.N. Tatem Middle School yesterday owing to mould issues.

Ms Riviere, who is also PTA president at West Pembroke Primary School, said that while she welcomed the extensive Score report, examining issues arising across the island’s primary schools published at the start of this year, she said she was yet to hear of plans for a similar report for the middle schools.

Teachers at T.N. Tatem collectively called in sick yesterday because of continuing problems with air quality while students turned up apparently unaware of the closure before being sent home.

Ms Riviere told The Royal Gazette: “It seems there has been no review of the middle schools from a structural perspective so we are seeing that they have very similar issues to the elementary schools and the question becomes how is that going to be dealt with.

“A list was created outlining priorities, but I don’t know if any reporting has been done as to what the issues are.

“We don’t know if it has been done for the middle schools because we don’t have a public document to say so.”

Ms Riviere said she hoped that going forward PTAs will be able to work closer with the Department of Education in coming up with solutions for the island’s schools.

“The ministry has been very receptive — I have had conversations with both the PS [permanent secretary] and the minister and they were receptive. They do want feedback and, where we can, we want to work not opposed to the ministry but with the ministry.”