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Dublin: 13°C Sunday 22 May 2022

Cork students attending classes in 'freezing' GAA dressing rooms after school fire

The Patrician Academy in Cork was badly damaged by fire over the summer.

STUDENTS IN CORK have been attending classes in ‘freezing conditions’ after their school building was gutted by fire, parents have said.

Mallow’s Patrician Academy was badly damaged by fire over the summer but classes began on schedule in September.

Some classes have been accommodated in the Mallow GAA Complex in Carrigoon and others have been held in the town’s Youth Centre.

Students from 1st year, 3rd year and transition year are understood to be going to school in the GAA club while reconstruction work is ongoing on the school.

Speaking on C103, one parent told the Cork Today programme that the dressing rooms where the children are being taught are hugely inadequate to deal with cold winter weather.

The problem with the heating has been resolved but I’d like to make the point that in the dressing rooms in Carrigoon the way they’re designed you’re never going to get any temperature up above five degrees. And also in the summer upstairs in the function room you had temperatures up to 29 degrees.

“Apart from the heating being broken it was minus two degrees inside in the classroom, but on a normal day it’s never going to be above five degrees,” Ann told the show.

Ann also said that parents had been assured that the children would be back in school prefabs before the end of September but that the deadline was repeatedly put back.

Source: C103/SoundCloud

She added that there are worries that the curriculum won’t be completed because children have been forced to leave classes 20 minutes early each day to make their way to a school bus. Teachers are also travelling long distances to reach the GAA club.

The programme read out a statement from the Patrician Academy which said:

Works at the school site are progressing and we were hopeful of school classes returning to the school site soon.

Another parent who spoke on the programme said health and safety concerns have been raised about exposed wires used for heaters in the dressing rooms.

Local TD and former student Sean Sherlock spoke on the programme and says that he has been in contact with the Minister for Education on the matter.

“I think there needs to be some kind of mechanism or proper mediation between parents or the board of management and principal of the school to see if we can get over some of the issues in relation to Carrigoon,” the deputy added.

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Rónán Duffy

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