£3.4m investment to upgrade educational facilities

Cabinet members at Kirklees Council have agreed £3.4m worth of funding to replace and upgrade facilities across at least 25 primary and secondary schools in their district.

A range of works will include kitchen refurbishments, roofing improvements, new electrical systems and the replacement of inefficient boilers.

The works will bring necessary improvements to school buildings, making them more environmentally friendly and ensuring pupils and staff are safe warm, dry and secure.

Councillor Carole Pattison, cabinet member for Learning, Aspiration and Communities, said: “Schools around the country have been going through an unprecedented time as most of their pupils are at home due to Covid-19, but we have not lost our focus on investing in the future.

“As well as supporting schools in so many other ways, we were keen to agree this funding so that improvement works could start as soon as possible.

“We are planning to carry out the works during school holiday periods so that the impact is minimised for staff, children and families.

“Enhancing the condition of our schools, and making sure they provide a comfortable environment, has a positive effect on teaching and learning, helping pupils to enjoy the best start in life.”

Cllr Graham Turner, cabinet member for Corporate, said: “We prioritise the projects based on need, but they will all support the council’s Climate Emergency work by reducing the Kirklees carbon footprint.

“School buildings will benefit from the greater use of sustainable technology, including through energy-efficient heating, better insulation and modern, energy-saving lighting.

“This will cut the usage of energy and, at a time when many schools are facing major financial challenges, it will also save money by reducing bills.

“We want everyone who uses school buildings and facilities to experience a high-quality, clean and green environment.”