Fire Safety Measures in England’s Schools
In the wake of the Grenfell Fire, The National Union of Teachers, Fire Brigades Union and Association of Teachers and Lecturers are urging the government to order crucial checks of fire safety measures in England’s schools.
Kevin Courtney, National Union of Teachers general secretary, said “For far too long the government has viewed health and safety as a ‘red tape’ burden. It has been seen as an afterthought and an opportunity to try to cut corners and save money. We all now know the terrible consequences of that approach. Fire safety in schools must now become a priority and for this to happen the government needs to heed our advice.”
The Local Government Association said that fire safety checks were continuing in council-run schools. Nick Gibb said: “The government is taking the potential impact from the Grenfell Tower seriously and as such, we are taking a strategic approach to the assessment of the wider public sector estate. The department is undertaking an analysis of all school buildings to identify those over four storeys high, to ensure we include all buildings that are over 18m in our analysis. This analysis is to establish what, if any, external cladding has been used on these buildings.
A Department for Education spokesman said all schools had to have mandatory fire risk assessments and new schools were subject to additional checks during the design process. Where these additional checks say that sprinklers or other fire safety issues are required, such steps must be taken.
News source: BBC