Nine North-east schools will undergo repairs after defects similar to those in Edinburgh were discovered.
Aberdeenshire Council carried out an investigation on its schools that were built as part of the public-private partnership (PPP) scheme to seek assurances about the structural integrity of similarly constructed buildings.
The decision came after 17 schools in Edinburgh were shut last April following the collapse of a wall at the city’s Oxgangs Primary in January 2016.
In total, nine tonnes of masonry fell at the school during a storm.
It was reported in May last year that Aberdeenshire Council’s schools were safe after the local authority received assurances from contractor the Robertson Group.
But it later emerged work would be carried out in nine of the region’s schools though the issues were not as serious as those in Edinburgh.
Work will now be carried out to Portlethen Academy, Meldrum Academy, Hill of Banchory Primary, Kintore Primary, Longside Primary, Banff Primary, Oldmeldrum Primary, Rothienorman Primary and Rosehearty Primary.
The works are due to be carried out during the summer holidays.
Aberdeenshire councillors yesterday agreed to an action plan and endorsed the remediation works.
Council leader Councillor Jim Gifford said: “The safety of the children and staff in our schools is paramount and I’m pleased to see such a rigorous approach to the recommendations set out in the Edinburgh report. It is reassuring that our PFI/PPP built schools are structurally safe, but I welcome new that remediation works will take place during the summer holidays.”
At some locations the surveys identified an absence within cavity walls, of supports – known as head restraints – and some inadequate embedment of wall ties at some schools.
It was also revealed instances where the outer wall was not tied properly.
Deputy leader Cllr Peter Argyle said: “I welcome the thorough work of colleagues in our property service in undertaking checks across those schools built under PFI/PPP, or those built around the same time and to the same design.
“It is reassuring to councillors, staff and parents the contractor has taken full responsibility for remedial works and is progressing quickly.”
Ritchie Johnson, director of business services, told councillors the local authority was in the process of seeking reimbursement from the Robertson Group for the works.
The contractor has confirmed there will be no cost to the council.
Councillors were also told investigations of more recently constructed schools at Ellon and Alford showed there were no problems.
Four Scottish local authorities have experienced wall collapses while around half, including Aberdeenshire Council, have uncovered “structural defects similar to Edinburgh that require rectification”.
Within PFI/PPP schools, facilities management staff carry out daily weekly and monthly janitorial inspections, which include inspections of external areas and internal building fabric when any defects are logged.