Page last updated at 18:55 GMT, Wednesday, 10 December 2008

School chosen from disrepair list

School pupils (generic)
Five schools in Edinburgh are on a disrepair shortlist

Portobello High School is set to be rebuilt first out of a list of five Edinburgh schools shortlisted for the state of their disrepair.

The 41.5m school plans mean Edinburgh City Council would need to find another 8.5m in February's budget to meet a shortfall.

James Gillespie's High School is being recommended as being fixed second.

Boroughmuir High School would be third, St John's Primary School fourth and St Crispin's Special School fifth.

Edinburgh councillors will vote on the proposals next week.

This is great news for Portobello but this is a bitter-sweet situation as the other four schools will be disappointed and worried about the future of their buildings
Marilyne MacLaren
Edinburgh City Council
The Wave 3 programme to rebuild five schools in Edinburgh is estimated at between 162m and 182m, depending on the preferred option for each school.

A report which went to the council in June 2008 estimated that, based on projected funds available, the programme would take at least 14 years to deliver and would represent a significant challenge.

Portobello has been recommended as the first school to be rebuilt after a condition and suitability assessment gave each school a score with the intention of addressing the school in most need.

If the recommendations go through then construction work would start in 2011/12 with the new school opening in 2013/14.

'Seriously concerned'

Marilyne MacLaren, Edinburgh City Council's education convener, said: "This is great news for Portobello but this is a bitter-sweet situation as the other four schools will be disappointed and worried about the future of their buildings.

"I am seriously concerned that the other four schools are not fit for purpose and desperately need to be replaced.

"We put the business case for each of the schools to the Scottish Government in June of this year and we have made it very clear that we need additional funding if we are to deliver all of these schools in the next five years."

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