Secondary school badly damaged by fire to remain closed for some time

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A school which was extensively damaged by a major fire will be out of commission for some time, the local authority has said.

Dundee City Council said it is determined to minimise disruption to the education of the 570 Braeview Academy pupils but they will have to remain at home into next week.

Pupils are being urged to use online learning available through the Glow network as the council works to arrange alternative classrooms, while the school’s teachers will be online to support learning from next week.

More than 50 firefighters worked through the night to tackle the blaze, which broke out at the school at around 9.40pm on Tuesday.

No-one was injured and police will now be carrying out a joint investigation with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

Braeview Academy fire
More than 50 firefighters were involved in tackling the blaze at the school (Graeme Mckenzie/Twitter/PA)

A Dundee City Council spokesman said: “The damage to Braeview Academy following last night’s fire is still being fully assessed, but it is clear that the building will be out of commission for some time.

“We are determined to minimise disruption to the pupils’ education, and are looking at all the options available. Within hours of the fire, discussions were already taking place with a focus on short-term measures to get the young people back in classrooms.

“Finding the best solution for our 570 pupils is not straightforward, and there are issues to consider around finding suitably equipped classrooms, access to learning materials and canteen facilities, to give just a few examples.

“Taking all that into account, we are working hard to create a bespoke timetable for the coming weeks, using other school accommodation in the city.

“Putting that in place will take some time, and unfortunately means Braeview pupils will remain at home this week and into next.

“Please be assured that we are doing everything we can to resume their classroom learning as soon as possible.”

Council representatives met with staff on Wednesday morning and said a meeting to update parents and carers will be organised for next week.

The spokesman added: “The staff, the young people and the wider residents of the area form a tight Braeview community, and that spirit and resilience will be more important than ever as we pull together for the benefit of our pupils after this sad incident.”

Some Braeview pupils are taking part in the opening of the V&A Dundee museum this week and the school tweeted that teachers will still be in touch to arrange rehearsals.

Braeview Academy‏ tweeted: “Devastating news that, due to fire damage, the school will be closed to all staff and pupils on Wednesday.

“Information will be communicated to staff, parents and carers, as it becomes available.

“Please keep tuned to social media and local radio for updates.”

Police are appealing for information about the blaze.

Inspector Chris Boath said: “The building was extensively damaged and enquiries are ongoing to establish the cause of the fire. A joint investigation with Scottish Fire and Rescue Service will take place in due course.

“Thankfully no-one was injured as a result of the fire.

“We are keen to speak to anyone who was in the area around the time of the fire or anyone who witnessed anything suspicious to come forward.”

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