Union fears over safety of students at Foremost School, Harrogate

First published in Harrogate & Ripon news

TWO unions have raised concerns about the safety of students with “challenging behaviour” and their teachers at a new North Yorkshire school.

The £11 million Foremost School, at a former naval site in Harrogate, was built to cater for students who have been taken out of mainstream education because of their difficult behaviour. The National Union of Teachers and Unison say they have voiced fears to North Yorkshire County Council over the design of the buildings, where staff are expected to maintain “line of sight” contact with students and colleagues.

The NUT also said they were concerned about the ability of students to move away from areas where they were being supervised and open fire doors. The unions have requested an urgent meeting with the council.

The council said the school had had “a challenging year” but safety was “everybody’s first priority”.

A spokesman said: “Moving students with complex difficulties of this nature into a new school is never easy and the council, governors and staff are working hard together to give the school a secure start.

“We have been very mindful of parents’ anxieties during this period of change and have tried to keep an open door for them to discuss any concerns they have.”

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