Seven Suffolk schools affected by the reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) crisis will be rebuilt or refurbished under a new government programme. 

The Department for Education (DfE) announced on Thursday that 119 schools plagued by RAAC will have it removed through the School Rebuilding Programme. 

The selected schools require more extensive and complex works, with one or more buildings set to be refurbished. 

East Anglian Daily Times: Farlingaye High School headteacher Peter SmithFarlingaye High School headteacher Peter Smith (Image: Newsquest)

In Suffolk, the schools enrolled into the programme are Stowupland High School, Farlingaye High School, Hadleigh High School, Claydon High School, East Bergholt High School, Thurston Community College and Glade Academy in Brandon. 

A further 110 schools and colleges – where works will typically be smaller in scale – will receive a grant to help them remove RAAC from their buildings.

Five schools and colleges have alternative arrangements in place to address the removal of RAAC. 

The identification of RAAC in Suffolk schools caused chaos at the start of the academic year last September.

Farlingaye High School, in Woodbridge, received assistance from the town's Sea Scouts group after the RAAC crisis came to the fore last year, as a large marquee was installed on the grounds for students to be taught in.

Others, such as Claydon High School, delayed their openings for the start of the new term.

East Anglian Daily Times: Gillian Keegan, Education SecretaryGillian Keegan, Education Secretary (Image: PA)

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan said: “Nothing is more important to me than the safety of every child and member of staff in school.

“We will continue to work closely with schools and colleges as we take the next step to permanently remove RAAC from affected buildings.”

The DfE has said its RAAC identification programme is now complete as 100% of schools and colleges with blocks built in the target era have responded to its questionnaire.

A school or college that has confirmed RAAC on site will be eligible for an inspection this term, but they can ask for an inspection to be deferred.