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Monday, 1 October, 2001, 12:35 GMT 13:35 UK
Vandalism prompts increased security
Woodgreen High School College of Sport, Wednesbury
The school was closed for emergency security talks
Uniformed police officers have begun patrols at a Midlands school which has been vandalised 17 times in the past month.

At least two officers will be at Wood Green High School College of Sport in Wednesbury, Sandwell, for two weeks at breaktimes, lunch and at the end of the day to improve security.

A 50,000 security scheme is also being considered.

The school was closed on Friday afternoon while staff, parents and police held an emergency meeting to discuss security.

Hidden shotgun

The meeting was called after the number of serious breaches of security on the site rose to seventeen since the start of September.

In one incident staff found a shotgun hidden on the school premises and concerns have also been raised about drug dealing outside the school.

Councillor Ian Jones, who is a member of the education team on Sandwell Borough Council, said the situation has become intolerable for the students.

He told BBC Radio WM: "Every morning they don't know what they are coming into.

"Classrooms have been ransacked, computers stolen and coursework destroyed. It is a very frustrating time for them."

Among the security measures being considered are new fences and cameras.

See also:

25 Jun 01 | Scotland
Crime cameras cut school vandalism
26 May 01 | Northern Ireland
School damaged by vandals
24 Apr 01 | Northern Ireland
Schools count cost of vandals
04 Aug 99 | Education
Schools fight holiday vandals
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