Following the Secretary of State for Education’s statement on the steps being taken to respond to the risk of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC), Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown backs the decision to close schools where necessary and asks that the 600 priority schools be surveyed as quickly as possible so that all schools can then be surveyed for RAAC.
The Secretary of State is absolutely right to prioritise the safety of our children and to close schools where necessary. Will she now give the House an assurance that those 600 priority schools will be surveyed as quickly as possible? Then we can move on to all schools and find out where RAAC is present, and take the appropriate remediation for every school that has it.
I assure my hon. Friend that it is already below that number because we have been surveying every day. We have now contracted eight building surveying companies—we had three; we now have eight—to ensure that we have sufficient capacity to do that as quickly as possible. We will do a survey for all the ones that are suspected to have RAAC—as I said, most of them will probably not go on to be confirmed to have it—and we hope to get through them all in the next couple of weeks.