Update on Western Building Systems School Building Issues

January 18, 2019 0

The Department of Education and Skills has today (Friday January 18th) announced that the second phase of assessments at schools built by Western Building Systems is now being initiated. These detailed investigations have been scheduled following the programme of initial structural assessments which were carried out in October and November 2018 at 42 schools constructed by Western Building Systems.

ardgillan_community_college_21oct18_2The initial assessments resulted in precautionary measures being put in place at 22 schools as an interim response.

The second phase of assessments now being initiated will involve detailed investigations to determine and design permanent remediation solutions. This second-phase programme will focus initially on the bundle of 22 schools in which precautionary measures were implemented.

John Sisk & Son has been appointed as the contractor to conduct the opening-up and testing works to facilitate the investigations. Ove Arup and Partners Ireland Limited (t/a Arup) has been appointed to carry out the investigations and to design the permanent engineering solutions as required for each individual school.

Five schools are scheduled for detailed assessments in the first tranche of the second phase programme (see table below for details).

Investigation work will take place at weekends to prevent disruption to the schools. A schedule for investigations in the remainder of the 22 schools in which precautionary measures were implemented will be finalised when assessments of the first five are completed.

Second-phase investigations also includes Ardgillan Community College in Balbriggan, part of which remains closed.

Building investigations in schools that did not require precautionary measures will be scheduled for the 2019 summer break.

The investigations will inform the permanent works required in the schools. The delivery of these works will be planned when the extent of the work needed is established. Works will be prioritised for delivery with the aim of maximising use of school holiday periods.

Precautionary measures will remain in place at the schools until permanent solutions have been implemented.

School principals are being kept fully informed and are assisting with arrangements for the second phase assessments. School authorities are communicating directly with parents on developments.

Schools scheduled in first tranche of second-phase building investigations programme are:

Presentation Convent NS Portarlington
Carrigaline ETNS
Scoil Chaitlin Maude NS, Tallaght
Gaelscoil Eiscir Riada, Lucan
St. Paul’s NS Ratoath