Consultation over Gartly oil leak school closure

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Gartly School

A consultation has been launched on the proposed closure of an Aberdeenshire school that shut three years ago after an oil leak.

Pupils from Gartly School were moved to another school after the incident in December 2018.

Aberdeenshire Council's education and children's services committee recommended its permanent closure earlier this year.

The statutory consultation will run until 24 February.

The school - which opened in 1962 and was then extended in 1970 - closed on 17 December 2018 due to what was described as a "heating problem".

The leak of heating oil caused contamination. Some children were said to have been left feeling ill after the leak and resulting strong smell.

The Gartly pupils were moved to Kennethmont School, but later moved to Rhynie School, about four miles away.

'Educational welfare'

A public meeting will also be held on 25 January at Gartly Community Hall. An online meeting will also take place on 26 January.

Education and children's services committee chairwoman Gillian Owen said: "I would encourage the local community to let us know what they think by completing the consultation process.

"We want to find a solution that best meets the wishes of the local community from the options currently available.

"At the heart of any decision to propose a closure of a school is the educational welfare of the children concerned."

A report outlining responses to the consultation will be considered by the committee next August.

It was estimated reinstating the building would cost more than £1m.

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