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Asbestos removed from Prospect Primary

Work to tackle asbestos at another public school was completed over the long weekend, an education ministry spokeswoman confirmed last night.

However, the spokeswoman said that it was “anticipated” that Prospect Primary School would be ready to welcome pupils for the first day of school, on Tuesday.

She added that a report had been received over the weekend, that work was needed in three areas of the Devonshire school.

The spokeswoman said: “Abatement works have since been completed and the Department of Education is awaiting a final certificate of completion, from the Department of Health.”

She added the certificate was expected to be received “on or before” Friday.

The spokeswoman said that extra cleaning was also needed in parts of the school.

Teachers from Prospect Primary were sent to nearby CedarBridge Academy yesterday to prepare for the start of the new school year, instead of their own school. The spokeswoman said the move was made “in the interest of the health and safety of teachers”.

She added that government officials had yesterday met the principal and school staff to update them on the Prospect Primary building and answer questions.

The spokeswoman added that parents of children at the school would be given an update by today.

She said that work to tackle asbestos at Clearwater Middle School in St David's continued.

The spokeswoman explained: “Some additional abatement works were needed, in one area of the cafeteria.”

She said that the affected area had been sealed off and that teachers had completed preschool activities, in the building, yesterday.

Teachers will be in off-site professional development sessions today and tomorrow, and they are expected to be back at the school by Friday.

She said that Government representatives had also met the principal and school staff from Clearwater, for a progress report on the asbestos abatement work.

The spokeswoman added that parents of Clearwater pupils would get an update today.

She said: “It is anticipated that students will be welcomed at Clearwater Middle and Prospect Primary on Tuesday.”

The confirmation from Government came after two sources told The Royal Gazette that asbestos had been found at Prospect Primary.

Shareka Tucker, the president of the Parent Teacher Association at Prospect Primary, said she had not been told anything about asbestos at the school.

She added: “I wasn't aware of the situation.”

Diallo Rabain, the Minister of Education, was sent several questions about the school yesterday.

He was asked where and when the asbestos had been found, and if parents had been alerted to the problem. He did not respond by press time.

Mr Rabain announced last Friday that the “majority” of public schools would be ready for teachers and staff today.

He said that “all but two” schools had been given the all-clear and that he expected an update, about the two schools, before the end of that day.

Mr Rabain added: “The results that we are waiting for, is indication that the schools have been cleaned, and set up properly, for the teachers.”

He apologised, last month, to parents and staff at Clearwater, and admitted they had not been told of work to tackle asbestos “in a timely fashion”.

Mr Rabain added: “It is our aim to be transparent and forthcoming, with all information in regards to school facilities and work being conducted, that relates to health and safety.

“Protocols are being put in place to ensure that the Ministry has all parents' correct e-mail addresses and contact information, to allow for notices of this nature to be sent out quickly and efficiently.”

Prospect Primary was given the all-clear after asbestos work was carried out in 2013.

A spokesperson for the education ministry said at the time that asbestos had been found in the adhesive used to stick tiles to the floor.

Asbestos removal: work was completed at Prospect Primary School over the weekend (File photograph)

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Published September 04, 2019 at 9:00 am (Updated September 04, 2019 at 8:59 am)

Asbestos removed from Prospect Primary

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