Parents at landslide risk Godre’r Graig Primary School say children have been 'forgotten'

Angry parents of pupils at Godre’r Graig Primary School in Neath Port Talbot say their children are being "forgotten."

They claim hot meals are only provided by the school once a week on Tuesdays, with "grab bags" offered for lunch during the rest of the week. 

Parents have told ITV News children are still being taught in temporary porta cabins on land next to Cwmtawe Community School in Pontardawe two years after they were forced to leave their former school building. 

Parents have told ITV News children are still being taught in temporary porta cabins

Neath Port Talbot Council say Covid restrictions are behind the decision to limit hot meals. 

In 2019 the former Godre’r Graig Primary School building was shut down suddenly after geological experts identified a potential landslide risk near the site.

Neath Port Talbot Council took the decision to close the school immediately at an emergency meeting after learning of a medium risk from a quarry spoil tip near the school. 

Parents have praised the work of teachers but say the council are neglecting pupils. 

“All we want is a hot meal in our kid's stomachs” says Siobhan Mcnamara whose son Dexter attends Godre’r Graig Primary School. 

“They are only having hot meals on a Tuesday which we feel is abysmal” she added.

“It's winter, it’s bitterly cold in our house now let alone in a porta cabin. For some children that meal is what they rely on. We are in a deprived area here and we feel because of the council's incompetence our children are missing out.” 

Siobhan Mcnamara's son Dexter attends Godre’r Graig Primary School. 

Kristy Prescott has two children at the school, she says the school closure is still impacting pupils.

She said: “The council are forgetting about our kids. They just put them in the cabins and that's that. 

“I’ve got a little daughter who’s six months old, I don’t know if I want to put her in that school even though I love the school, I used to go to Godre’r Graig school when I was younger.

“They are only getting one hot meal a week and apparently it’s cold when it gets to them and the grab and go bags are just not filling. It would be nice for the kids to have a hot meal.”

Parents have also complained of a lack of breakfast club and after school club. 

Parents have also complained of a lack of breakfast club and after school club. 

Laura Davies says she sends her son to school with a packed lunch but the rising cost of living is making it that much more difficult.

“I can't fault the teachers at all, I think they’re brilliant, the school is brilliant, it’s just the council. They have just put us put down in the portacabins and just left us to it," she said.

A Neath Port Talbot Council spokesperson said: “Pupils from Godre’r Graig Primary School have been educated in their own dedicated area of Cwmtawe Community School since July 2019 when independent geological experts ESP (Earth Science Partnership of Cardiff) identified a landslide risk to the school playground at Godre’r Graig from a spoil tip.

"Due to Covid restrictions, it was not possible for a time for pupils to continue to use the dining facilities at Cwmtawe Community School, as they were doing before the pandemic.

“These facilities are now available again, but the Godre’r Graig Primary School Governing Body has taken the decision not to allow pupils to return, in an effort to restrict Covid transmission, and to keep pupils and staff safe.

"Hot meals are available through the week, although currently not on a daily basis, and we continue to work with the school to look at providing additional hot meals to pupils as soon as possible.”

"Currently there are breakfast club and kitchen assistant vacancies at the school, which prevents the opportunity to operate a Breakfast Club.

“The staff at the school and the Governing Body, with the full support of local authority officers, are committed to making sure that the pupils of Godre'r Graig Primary are supported and nurtured through this difficult period and that the good standards of education attained by pupils at the school are maintained. Arrangements at the school are under constant review.”