Kent

Rebuild projects at 15 Kent schools to be reconsidered

Temporary school building in Sandwell
Image caption Some schools awaiting rebuilds rely on temporary classrooms

Rebuilding projects at more than a dozen Kent schools could be resurrected after the government was forced to reconsider scrapping them.

Plans at 36 schools in the county were halted when ministers stopped the Building Schools for the Future scheme last year, blaming a lack of money.

Now Kent County Council has asked the coalition to carry on with 15 rebuilds.

It follows a High Court ruling which found the government did not consult properly over the cuts.

The schools resubmitted by the council were those next on the list to be refurbished, and deemed most in need of redevelopment.

Council leader Paul Carter said they had suffered when months of planning was scuppered by the government's decision.

He added: "Let's hope for these schools and the young people educated within them that we get the orange or green light.

"It's our belief that the promises made by the previous government were beyond the point of no return."

'Abuse of power'

Education Secretary Michael Gove has promised to consider the council's submissions, along with those made by another five local authorities who challenged his original decision.

The challenges related to the revamp or rebuild of 58 schools which, if allowed to go ahead, would have cost the government £1bn.

In five of the six council cases, the failure was "so unfair as to amount to an abuse of power", said the High Court judge.

A final decision on Kent's schools is not expected until June or July.

The rebuilding programme itself was criticised in a report commissioned by the government and published on Friday.

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