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£700k to improve La Mare de Carteret

£700k to improve La Mare de Carteret

Friday 27 April 2018

£700k to improve La Mare de Carteret

Just over £700,000 has been committed to improving school facilities at La Mare de Carteret before the new school year starts in September.

Education, Sport & Culture have made the decision because the schools and their pupils and staff have "suffered as a result of under-investment", committee President Deputy Matt Fallaize said.

Just two years ago there was a £1m. underspend on a budget approved for urgent repairs to the site. The then-Treasury & Resources Department approved a request for the repairs in early 2016, giving a budget of £1.65m., with the unspent money returned to Policy & Resources. 

"Anyone who has visited the schools at La Mare de Carteret will have been both impressed by the drive, culture, and leadership, and dismayed by the facilities," Deputy Fallaize said.

"For too long the students and staff have had to work in unacceptable conditions as a result of consistent under-investment. This has been allowed to happen on the premise that completely new facilities might be just a few years away, but our Committee does not believe it is acceptable to maintain the facilities in their current condition any longer."

Matt FallaizeAbove: President of Education, Sport & Culture Deputy Matt Fallaize.

Both the Education and P&R committees said it recognised immediate investment in the schools was "vital" in advance of the restructuring of secondary and post-16 education agreed by the States in January.

The work includes:

  • Major refurbishment of the high school’s mobile classrooms, mobiles 1-6 and the drama mobile.  Examples of the works include: insulation - walls and floors, re-decorate, new flooring, new heating/ventilation where required.  External works – provide greater floor ventilation and lower surrounding ground levels to aid drainage around and beneath mobile classrooms.
  • Full window servicing and unit replacement (where required).
  • Painting and decoration to classrooms, circulation and offices (where required).
  • Replace light units (where required) to ensure correct lux levels for teaching and learning environments.
  • Some electrical and plumbing works.
  • Provide new lockers for all students.
  • Provide new school furniture to some classes.

"I do not wish to create false expectations and suggest that these short term works are capable of replicating a newly-built school.  All island students in States-run secondary education will ultimately be in modern, first-class facilities and that will happen as soon as reasonably practicable," Deputy Fallaize added.

"However, in the short term the programme of works we have approved can deliver a visibly better learning and teaching environment at La Mare de Carteret by the start of the new academic year in September this year. That is the clear objective we have set our officers."

Vicky Godley, La Mare de Carteret High School Headteacher, said they were pleased with the planned investments: "It is vital that students and staff are supported during this transition period and these improvements, which are greatly needed, are welcomed by everyone connected to the school."

Gus Paterson, who was appointed Chief Secretary to the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture in February, said he visited the schools shortly after taking up his new role and was shocked by the poor conditions.

"Improvements to the facilities are long overdue and the agreed plan will see the refurbishment of mobile classrooms at the back of the high school along with a lot of other works in both buildings, including the purchase of essential school equipment. We anticipate delivering some of the smaller packages of works in the May half term, with the majority of the works carried out during the summer holiday," he said.

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