Derbyshire school fire was “accidental”

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An investigation into the cause of a fire at a Derbyshire primary school has found it was accidental.

Stonebroom Primary School, near Alfreton, has reopened as normal today (Monday, July 14) following the blaze on Thursday.

Staff led 128 pupils to safety after a fire broke out in part of the roof, which is currently being replaced.

No-one was injured during the evacuation, which took about two minutes and followed the school’s procedures.

Fire officers - who regularly attend the High Street school to teach the children about fire safety - praised the children and staff for their quick and calm response to the situation.

The children were accompanied by 11 members of staff on to the school field where most were collected by their parents who had heard locally about the situation.

Head teacher Sara George said: “I’d like to thank all my staff and the children for the calm and collected way they dealt with the situation.

“We have a fire drill every half term and fire officers come in to school regularly to talk about fire safety so everyone knew what to do.

“As part of these visits, our pupils are taught to crawl on the floor to avoid smoke and some of the children leaving an IT room used this training to get out of the classroom.

“The fire officers who came to deal with the fire yesterday were full of praise for the way the whole school reacted and I’m very proud of everyone.”

The fire has affected the school office and two classrooms. Children in the two affected rooms will be taught in other areas of the school until repairs are completed.

Mrs George added: “Unfortunately we were not able to phone parents as the fire affected the school office where we keep our records, but most had heard about the situation locally and arranged for their children to be picked up.”

The school reopened following a full health and safety inspection.

A structural inspection of the building also declared safe to enter.

Cllr Kevin Gillott, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “The most important thing is that everyone got out safely and no-one was hurt.

“The school followed all its fire evacuation procedures and all the relevant checks have been done to make sure it’s safe for the children and staff to return to school on Monday.”

The cause of the fire is being investigated.