ONE in five schools has failed to meet asbestos regulations, according to a new report released yesterday by the Education Funding Agency.
Teaching unions have repeatedly raised concerns about the health hazards for both teachers and children due to the presence of the deadly substance.
When disturbed, asbestos fibres can be inhaled and lead to the contraction of the cancer mesothelioma decades later.
The latest survey of asbestos management, which a quarter of schools responded to, showed a huge 83.1 per cent have the substance on site.
Most were deemed to have “generally appropriate” management arrangements in place, or a need for some improvement.
But 19 per cent — 1,060 schools — were deemed “not compliant.” Of these, all but 114 were given “automatically generated advice” and not contacted directly.
Teaching union Nasuwt general secretary Chris Keates said the figures were “deeply concerning,” as schools in breach were less likely to respond.
“The DfE must bring forward proposals for the phased removal of asbestos without delay,” she added.