‘We can’t send our children to school on building site’

‘We can’t send our children to school on building site’

Bayards Hill Primary School

Bayards Hill Primary School

First published in Education
Last updated
The Oxford Times: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Blackbird Leys and Greater Leys. Call me on 01865 425403

CHILDREN have been playing alongside heavy machinery at an Oxford primary school, according to their parents.

Bayards Hill Primary School, in Waynflete Road, Barton, is in phase two of its £5.2m refurbishment but parents are concerned the playground is a building site.

The school reopened for the new term on Wednesday.

Father and builder Kieran Carton said he does not believe the school should be open.

The Oxford Times:

Kieran Carton with daughter Annie, five

He said: “That is crazy. I’ve been working on building sites since I was a teenager and I know there’s no way the kids should be in here – it shouldn’t be open, it’s unsafe.”

His five-year-old daughter Annie has just joined the school and said: “It’s really noisy – it’s bang-bang-bang, clatter-clatter.”

The work, taking place around the newly completed classrooms, is to build office space and the school’s kitchen.

The building work is fenced off using temporary wire panels which can be moved to let construction staff in and out.

One mother, who did not want to be named, said: “It’s a wreck, it’s like a war zone.

“There are humungous holes in the playground and the surface hasn’t been set.”

Seven-year-old pupil William Meecham said: “They’re knocking down buildings. It’s really dusty inside and it’s all noisy. I want the builders to finish.”

Some parents are pulling their children out of classes until changes are made.

Hayley Davies’s son Jonas, 10, did not go to school yesterday because of the work.

The Oxford Times:

Hayley Davies

Mrs Davies, 45, of Headington, said: “It’s disgusting – I’m appalled. I’m not letting Jonas come in. No-one’s asked me why he’s not there yet.

“We got a text on Tuesday saying the school was open. I thought it was going to be safe for them to go in.

“I understand it might not be completely finished, but you can’t teach in this.”

Oxfordshire County Council’s cabinet member for business and customer services Nick Carter said: “There is absolutely no question of children’s safety being compromised as a result of Bayards Hill School opening this week.

“Construction work has been taking place at the school over the summer holidays.

“There were concerns up to the start of term that this phase of construction work would not be completed for the school to open this week.

“However, all checks and measures have been taken to ensure the site is safe.

“Staff from the council’s property team have visited the site today to reassure parents who have raised concerns.”

The school’s acting headteacher Sylvia Hawken seemed unaware that parents were not sending children in, saying: “No-one has told me they’ve taken their children out of school because of this.”

The Oxford Times:

Acting headteacher Sylvia Hawken 

She dismissed the concerns, and said: “There are lots of schools where building work is going on. It’s quite normal.”

Following questions from the Oxford Mail, Oxfordshire County Council, which is responsible for the construction work, completed an emergency inspection yesterday.

Oxford East MP Andrew Smith said: “Parents have a right to know that their children are safe at school.

“It would have been better if things could have been organised to avoid this worry.

“If the school does close, then I hope any days lost will be made up, because every day counts in a child’s education.”

'Is this a joke?'

  • Bridget, mother of Gina, nine, said: “It’s disgusting. I’m not sending Gina in tomorrow. It’s hazardous for the children.”
  • Laura, mother of Joshua, five, said: “It’s quite dangerous from a child’s point of view. I can’t take him out. I’ve got no other childcare options when I’m at college.”
  • Sam has a grandson in Year One. She said: “Is this a joke? There’s no way that school is ready for the kids.”

 

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Comments (18)

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9:20am Fri 5 Sep 14

HomerSimpsonDoh says...

When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life.
When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life. HomerSimpsonDoh
  • Score: 9

10:33am Fri 5 Sep 14

Quentin Walker says...

Admirable concern for the safety of their children...it's a pity that concern doesn't stretch to how they park their cars outside the school. A chicane in the road is visible in the photo. Still, they can't blame the Council for that.
Admirable concern for the safety of their children...it's a pity that concern doesn't stretch to how they park their cars outside the school. A chicane in the road is visible in the photo. Still, they can't blame the Council for that. Quentin Walker
  • Score: 3

10:39am Fri 5 Sep 14

ammxxx says...

For your information my brother-in-law does have a job (people are entitled to days off) and is more then happy to get out of bed to take his daughter to school! So keep your comments to yourself as you clearly don't know anything! And as for being a chav look up the meaning of it and then get back to me! Clearly you have nothing better then to get involved with something that has nothing to do with you or your child's safety. That is all!
For your information my brother-in-law does have a job (people are entitled to days off) and is more then happy to get out of bed to take his daughter to school! So keep your comments to yourself as you clearly don't know anything! And as for being a chav look up the meaning of it and then get back to me! Clearly you have nothing better then to get involved with something that has nothing to do with you or your child's safety. That is all! ammxxx
  • Score: 8

10:47am Fri 5 Sep 14

Beechtree says...

I'm sure lots of schools in same position, due to Government's insistence on provision of school meals for the younger children, which in turn means lots of schools, as this one, need to re-build their kitchens.
Other local schools have done lots to integrate the building work into the curriculum. Children at St.Christopher's in Cowley had great fun last term meeting the builders, doing video-interviews, etc. The hoardings have colourful art-work, along with spy-holes at appropriate heights so children and staff can see the progress. It hasn't been plain sailing, with problems getting things finished on time. But as usual, all the staff have worked hard to make it welcoming for the children at the start of term, eg going in over the holidays to re-stock classrooms, create temporary spaces, move furniture. Even if the children weren't quite where they were expecting to be, there were maps to direct families on day 1, along with the head and all the staff in the grounds to help.
Hats off (though not safety ones) to all the workers on site and the St.Christopher's staff.
PS I think Wood Farm managed their enormous building site by involving the children, as well.
I'm sure lots of schools in same position, due to Government's insistence on provision of school meals for the younger children, which in turn means lots of schools, as this one, need to re-build their kitchens. Other local schools have done lots to integrate the building work into the curriculum. Children at St.Christopher's in Cowley had great fun last term meeting the builders, doing video-interviews, etc. The hoardings have colourful art-work, along with spy-holes at appropriate heights so children and staff can see the progress. It hasn't been plain sailing, with problems getting things finished on time. But as usual, all the staff have worked hard to make it welcoming for the children at the start of term, eg going in over the holidays to re-stock classrooms, create temporary spaces, move furniture. Even if the children weren't quite where they were expecting to be, there were maps to direct families on day 1, along with the head and all the staff in the grounds to help. Hats off (though not safety ones) to all the workers on site and the St.Christopher's staff. PS I think Wood Farm managed their enormous building site by involving the children, as well. Beechtree
  • Score: 12

10:59am Fri 5 Sep 14

dallygirl says...

They also forgot to mention that the childrens supplies are stored in the old gym thats awaiting demolition but the teachers arent allowed to go in there due to asbestos concerns! ! I also know that these suppliea when available, will be sent up to the classrooms with potentially asbestos on them, how safe is that? My son had his first lesson on the playing field as the classrooms weren't ready! !! I tried to call the school to express my concerns all day yesterday but they had no phone lines so again in an emergency noone would be able to contact the school!
There is one way in and one way out that at its widest is approx 10ft and narrowest wide enough for a double buggy. 400 children and parents walking through that right beside a building site iS NOT SAFE FOR ANYONE!! A cruah hazard in itself. The people who have made negative unnecessary comments I invite you to come with your children and do what we parents have to do.
Even the builders told the head teacher she should delay opening by 2 weeks! And are all of the builders crb checked?
They also forgot to mention that the childrens supplies are stored in the old gym thats awaiting demolition but the teachers arent allowed to go in there due to asbestos concerns! ! I also know that these suppliea when available, will be sent up to the classrooms with potentially asbestos on them, how safe is that? My son had his first lesson on the playing field as the classrooms weren't ready! !! I tried to call the school to express my concerns all day yesterday but they had no phone lines so again in an emergency noone would be able to contact the school! There is one way in and one way out that at its widest is approx 10ft and narrowest wide enough for a double buggy. 400 children and parents walking through that right beside a building site iS NOT SAFE FOR ANYONE!! A cruah hazard in itself. The people who have made negative unnecessary comments I invite you to come with your children and do what we parents have to do. Even the builders told the head teacher she should delay opening by 2 weeks! And are all of the builders crb checked? dallygirl
  • Score: 6

11:08am Fri 5 Sep 14

dallygirl says...

Posh girl I am in the pictures yes not looking my best after having had an operation. I can tell you, having grown up in summertown, Barton is a much nicer place to live! We have a good old fashioned (probably you pretending to be posh you wont know anything about!!) We support each other when needed. Barton has changed even since I moved in and continues to change. This article is about our childrens safety and when the builders are concerned that actually says something.
Posh girl I am in the pictures yes not looking my best after having had an operation. I can tell you, having grown up in summertown, Barton is a much nicer place to live! We have a good old fashioned (probably you pretending to be posh you wont know anything about!!) We support each other when needed. Barton has changed even since I moved in and continues to change. This article is about our childrens safety and when the builders are concerned that actually says something. dallygirl
  • Score: 13

11:29am Fri 5 Sep 14

Poshbird35 says...

dallygirl wrote:
They also forgot to mention that the childrens supplies are stored in the old gym thats awaiting demolition but the teachers arent allowed to go in there due to asbestos concerns! ! I also know that these suppliea when available, will be sent up to the classrooms with potentially asbestos on them, how safe is that? My son had his first lesson on the playing field as the classrooms weren't ready! !! I tried to call the school to express my concerns all day yesterday but they had no phone lines so again in an emergency noone would be able to contact the school!
There is one way in and one way out that at its widest is approx 10ft and narrowest wide enough for a double buggy. 400 children and parents walking through that right beside a building site iS NOT SAFE FOR ANYONE!! A cruah hazard in itself. The people who have made negative unnecessary comments I invite you to come with your children and do what we parents have to do.
Even the builders told the head teacher she should delay opening by 2 weeks! And are all of the builders crb checked?
You state that this article is about the childrens safety??

So why are you bringing up a subject about asbestos which is not even mentioned in this article, and therefore as the information is not confirmed as coming from yourself is not viable.

If your child is in school, I fail to see what kind of 'emergency' their would have to be for you to need to get in touch with the school. If it was a real emergency, and you clearly live local, then you could of just popped into reception.

An access route for example evn a 10ft gateway is ample even for such high volume of people to get through during the day and the start and close of school. It maybe next to a building site, but how can it be a crush hazard? (I assume this is what you meant as your spelling is vile)
This is why they have fences up!

In regards to the CRB check, builders do not have direct contact with the children, so are not obliged to be CRB checked
[quote][p][bold]dallygirl[/bold] wrote: They also forgot to mention that the childrens supplies are stored in the old gym thats awaiting demolition but the teachers arent allowed to go in there due to asbestos concerns! ! I also know that these suppliea when available, will be sent up to the classrooms with potentially asbestos on them, how safe is that? My son had his first lesson on the playing field as the classrooms weren't ready! !! I tried to call the school to express my concerns all day yesterday but they had no phone lines so again in an emergency noone would be able to contact the school! There is one way in and one way out that at its widest is approx 10ft and narrowest wide enough for a double buggy. 400 children and parents walking through that right beside a building site iS NOT SAFE FOR ANYONE!! A cruah hazard in itself. The people who have made negative unnecessary comments I invite you to come with your children and do what we parents have to do. Even the builders told the head teacher she should delay opening by 2 weeks! And are all of the builders crb checked?[/p][/quote]You state that this article is about the childrens safety?? So why are you bringing up a subject about asbestos which is not even mentioned in this article, and therefore as the information is not confirmed as coming from yourself is not viable. If your child is in school, I fail to see what kind of 'emergency' their would have to be for you to need to get in touch with the school. If it was a real emergency, and you clearly live local, then you could of just popped into reception. An access route for example evn a 10ft gateway is ample even for such high volume of people to get through during the day and the start and close of school. It maybe next to a building site, but how can it be a crush hazard? (I assume this is what you meant as your spelling is vile) This is why they have fences up! In regards to the CRB check, builders do not have direct contact with the children, so are not obliged to be CRB checked Poshbird35
  • Score: -1

12:35pm Fri 5 Sep 14

ammxxx says...

Yes I'm from Barton and im proud to be from Barton don't tarnish everyone with the same brush you judgemental fool! You clearly have nothing better to do with your day, sure you have a job! Not that its any of your business what he does but he has a well paid job as do i and we both grew up in Barton! Shock Horror!! And im sure everyone is entitled to annual leave! And you clearly wouldn't understand having concern and care about another human being would you.. And haha maybe this is your 5 minutes of fame to! This has no concern to you nor does the estate and people in it so by all means comment on the article but keep your opinions of the people to yourself as you don't know any of them. Silly cow!
Yes I'm from Barton and im proud to be from Barton don't tarnish everyone with the same brush you judgemental fool! You clearly have nothing better to do with your day, sure you have a job! Not that its any of your business what he does but he has a well paid job as do i and we both grew up in Barton! Shock Horror!! And im sure everyone is entitled to annual leave! And you clearly wouldn't understand having concern and care about another human being would you.. And haha maybe this is your 5 minutes of fame to! This has no concern to you nor does the estate and people in it so by all means comment on the article but keep your opinions of the people to yourself as you don't know any of them. Silly cow! ammxxx
  • Score: 6

1:24pm Fri 5 Sep 14

Poshbird35 says...

DOGGYDAY wrote:
Posh bird – mmmmm posh yet reading the Oxford Mail, in my experience of POSH people only the times will do darling! Perhaps Mr Carton took the week off from work to make sure his daughter settled into school. Most builders are self employed so can manage their own time and finances accordingly.
These parents were worried for the safety of their children yet because they come from Barton you assume they are urchins.

What vile obnoxious cretins you are.
I find the local stories are more of an interest, and seeing whom is trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill!

He maybe self employed..He may have also be unemployed/unemploya
ble.

But standing there, complaining about issues that would not arise due to relevant site saftey checks is just creating a little storm.

The word urchins is a bit strong, I would never judge anyone, until they open their mouths ;)
[quote][p][bold]DOGGYDAY[/bold] wrote: Posh bird – mmmmm posh yet reading the Oxford Mail, in my experience of POSH people only the times will do darling! Perhaps Mr Carton took the week off from work to make sure his daughter settled into school. Most builders are self employed so can manage their own time and finances accordingly. These parents were worried for the safety of their children yet because they come from Barton you assume they are urchins. What vile obnoxious cretins you are.[/p][/quote]I find the local stories are more of an interest, and seeing whom is trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill! He maybe self employed..He may have also be unemployed/unemploya ble. But standing there, complaining about issues that would not arise due to relevant site saftey checks is just creating a little storm. The word urchins is a bit strong, I would never judge anyone, until they open their mouths ;) Poshbird35
  • Score: -10

1:45pm Fri 5 Sep 14

yabbadabbadoo256 says...

What a joke. some parents moan about anything just to get air time.

When I was younger they rebuilt our school, built 3 new blocks and managed to keep the school open while it was a building site, but then again that was in the past where people just "Kept calm and got on with it" sadly a rule that is lacking in today's world.
What a joke. some parents moan about anything just to get air time. When I was younger they rebuilt our school, built 3 new blocks and managed to keep the school open while it was a building site, but then again that was in the past where people just "Kept calm and got on with it" sadly a rule that is lacking in today's world. yabbadabbadoo256
  • Score: 2

4:29pm Fri 5 Sep 14

Taxpayer01 says...

Think about all the engineers, builders,tradespeopl
e working up to 7 days a week to get the school ready for the kids all the while missing out spending time with there own family if you don't think it's safe don't send them but don't slag them off when you aren't the ones working there putting up with rude parents having a go a them
Think about all the engineers, builders,tradespeopl e working up to 7 days a week to get the school ready for the kids all the while missing out spending time with there own family if you don't think it's safe don't send them but don't slag them off when you aren't the ones working there putting up with rude parents having a go a them Taxpayer01
  • Score: 5

4:40pm Fri 5 Sep 14

Whitto says...

I wonder if the mother who didn't want to named has ever been to a war zone?
I also wonder if she didn't want to be named as she knew how stupid this comment would sound?
I wonder if the mother who didn't want to named has ever been to a war zone? I also wonder if she didn't want to be named as she knew how stupid this comment would sound? Whitto
  • Score: 1

4:55pm Fri 5 Sep 14

Pianissimo says...

So many hateful, prejudiced remarks about "chavs"! A little tolerance would be helpful - sadly, the people who assume nasty things about Barton residents don't even have a little tolerance.

And why do some of the narrow-minded haters think that "have" is spelt "of"? It sounds like the sort of thing that a chav would do!
So many hateful, prejudiced remarks about "chavs"! A little tolerance would be helpful - sadly, the people who assume nasty things about Barton residents don't even have a little tolerance. And why do some of the narrow-minded haters think that "have" is spelt "of"? It sounds like the sort of thing that a chav would do! Pianissimo
  • Score: 5

5:06pm Fri 5 Sep 14

famliy says...

Firstly I'm a Barton resident and very proud of my upbringing . Secondly mr carton is a great father whom is prepaired to put his face in the paper to protect his daughter and all the children at Bayards school by speaking up . Mr carton I applude you . It's not just the noise that's an issue but machinery and dust , posh bird you have had a lot to say but I feel a public apology is called for Bayards please put the need of the children first
Firstly I'm a Barton resident and very proud of my upbringing . Secondly mr carton is a great father whom is prepaired to put his face in the paper to protect his daughter and all the children at Bayards school by speaking up . Mr carton I applude you . It's not just the noise that's an issue but machinery and dust , posh bird you have had a lot to say but I feel a public apology is called for Bayards please put the need of the children first famliy
  • Score: 6

7:36pm Fri 5 Sep 14

Poshbird35 says...

DOGGYDAY wrote:
Well what a turn around PB you admit that you are in fact LOCAL to Barton.

Surely if he were unemployed the story would have read "Unemployed father Kieran Carton" however it does read "Father and builder Kieran Carton".

To Quote Plato "Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance."

As someone who is childless you wouldn't understand this complaint anyway this is made obvious by your opinion on how do make contact in an emergency. You were trying to get a reaction by abusing people, well done. I really hope this made your lonely little Friday a tiny bit better. These are the people you will envy when you are sat in your nursing home without any visitors. Hopefully one of their children will be the person caring for you. ENJOY
I admit I am local, as in Oxford, hence I am reading the Oxford mail.

Local is Oxford!
[quote][p][bold]DOGGYDAY[/bold] wrote: Well what a turn around PB you admit that you are in fact LOCAL to Barton. Surely if he were unemployed the story would have read "Unemployed father Kieran Carton" however it does read "Father and builder Kieran Carton". To Quote Plato "Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance." As someone who is childless you wouldn't understand this complaint anyway this is made obvious by your opinion on how do make contact in an emergency. You were trying to get a reaction by abusing people, well done. I really hope this made your lonely little Friday a tiny bit better. These are the people you will envy when you are sat in your nursing home without any visitors. Hopefully one of their children will be the person caring for you. ENJOY[/p][/quote]I admit I am local, as in Oxford, hence I am reading the Oxford mail. Local is Oxford! Poshbird35
  • Score: -1

9:08pm Sat 6 Sep 14

Jellybabes says...

HomerSimpsonDoh wrote:
When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life.
The school takes children from the age of three. No one can seriously expect a 3 year old to be responsible for their own safety.
[quote][p][bold]HomerSimpsonDoh[/bold] wrote: When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life.[/p][/quote]The school takes children from the age of three. No one can seriously expect a 3 year old to be responsible for their own safety. Jellybabes
  • Score: 1

5:26pm Sun 7 Sep 14

Jellybabes says...

The New Private Eye wrote:
Jellybabes wrote:
HomerSimpsonDoh wrote:
When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life.
The school takes children from the age of three. No one can seriously expect a 3 year old to be responsible for their own safety.
I think you missed the whole point, the school is safe, it has passed a safety inspection, and the teachers take care of the pupils welfare. Do you really think that 3 year olds are just left to clamber over JCB's? This is just a complete over reaction by a few parents, there is no way in this day and age of compensation first, that a government department would leave themselves open to litigation. I may be wrong but it seems to me that some people are looking for a way to top up their benefits.
If the school was safe to open last week then how do you explain the extra safety measures that have been put in place since then. Obviously someone agreed with parents concerns for that to happen.

I have no idea how parents keeping children home tops up their benefits. More likely that wages have been lost.
[quote][p][bold]The New Private Eye[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Jellybabes[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]HomerSimpsonDoh[/bold] wrote: When I was younger we used to play on building sites. The problem is the parents not teaching their kids not to play on building sites. The site is fenced off and if little Jonny or Mary goes through the fence, then its the parents fault for not teaching them right. The school is improving its buildings and these chav parents are still moaning, get a job and a life.[/p][/quote]The school takes children from the age of three. No one can seriously expect a 3 year old to be responsible for their own safety.[/p][/quote]I think you missed the whole point, the school is safe, it has passed a safety inspection, and the teachers take care of the pupils welfare. Do you really think that 3 year olds are just left to clamber over JCB's? This is just a complete over reaction by a few parents, there is no way in this day and age of compensation first, that a government department would leave themselves open to litigation. I may be wrong but it seems to me that some people are looking for a way to top up their benefits.[/p][/quote]If the school was safe to open last week then how do you explain the extra safety measures that have been put in place since then. Obviously someone agreed with parents concerns for that to happen. I have no idea how parents keeping children home tops up their benefits. More likely that wages have been lost. Jellybabes
  • Score: 2

5:43am Mon 8 Sep 14

I_says_He_says_She says...

Some people exaggerate about how unsafe it is for kids to go school when building works are carried out. But I remember when my parents sent my sister to school when Peers was being transformed to Oxford academy, and the builders did not clear up after themselves and my sister fell and sliced her arm open on some glass. If was my child, and I thought they were at risk, I would not send them in. It is unclear how dangerous it is in this school as lack of pics.
Some people exaggerate about how unsafe it is for kids to go school when building works are carried out. But I remember when my parents sent my sister to school when Peers was being transformed to Oxford academy, and the builders did not clear up after themselves and my sister fell and sliced her arm open on some glass. If was my child, and I thought they were at risk, I would not send them in. It is unclear how dangerous it is in this school as lack of pics. I_says_He_says_She
  • Score: 3

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