Tuesday, 7 September 2010

School Closure - Update 3 - School Closed until Wed 8th

Dear parents/whanau and friends of Burnham School,

On behalf of the Board of Trustees and staff team we hope everyone is managing during this challenging time. This is certainly a test of our resilience and ability to cope. The school has sustained minimal damage and is amazingly untouched. There is minimal mess to clean up in most areas, in fact chairs are still on desks!!!!

Please know that we are on hand if anyone in the community requires assistance of any kind, just ask by texting Rob 021 590 572 or Cherie 021 245 5099 and we can help. If there are children who require assistance please also consider asking for our support. Even a reassuring phone call can sometimes help. It may be worth showing your children the photos at the end of this post to reassure them that the school is in great shape!

We have been in close contact with a range of other professionals over the weekend and early this week and have managed to get the entire school assessed for safety. We have confirmed the following:
  1. Sunday: a visual check around the school (including playground, walls, fences) and through every space by Ange and Rob.
  2. Monday: a thorough check by a structural engineer and a fire safety engineer to check structural integrity of buildings - the whare and hall are closed until we get more in depth assessments completed. Every other space is safe.
  3. Monday: checks of water contamination and quality have been undertaken by a qualified water technician - ph levels are good and we are receiving chlorine via the camp water supply. Water pressure is unaffected
  4. Tuesday: a glazier has been booked to replace 3 broken windows. We will confirm other elements of our infrastructure today or tomorrow such as electrical supply, communications and sewerage.
While we have declared that the school is safe for staff and adult volunteers to begin the clean up process, given the frequency and strength of aftershocks we believe that it is counter productive to begin this until we can ensure the wider environment is safe and that everyone involved in the clean up has had space and time to ensure the emotional safety of their family. 

The Ministry of Education and Civil Defence have not yet been able to advise us as to the timing of our clean up, so we have decided to delay this and close the school on Wednesday to children. 

Clean Up Wednesday:
  • At this stage we intend on staff and a small group of adult volunteers to support the clean up process beginning 1030hrs Wednesday. 
  • No adult is to enter the school site without permission from Rob Clarke, Principal. It is essential that this clean up process is strictly controlled and everyone on site is known to the staff team. 
  • If you wish to offer help for this, please text Rob on 021 590 572.
On Behalf of the Board of Trustees
Rob Clarke - Principal
Ange Colenso - Chairperson


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