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of the British Broadcasting Corporation



Thursday, 29 November 2007, 16:59 GMT
Rain leak in school's fire system

A £38m purpose-built academy school in Kent had to be temporarily closed when rain leaked into part of its fire system's safety mechanisms.

The Folkestone Academy's 1,080 pupils were told not to come in on Thursday due to a malfunctioning fire sensor.

The building, which was opened in September, was designed by architects Fosters and partners.

Vice principal Simon Beamish said adverse weather was to blame and the school would reopen on Friday.

He added: "It is a very unfortunate situation which has led to the need to close the school but our priority is the safety of the children.

"The engineers have been in and fixed it and the children will be back in tomorrow."

Mr Beamish said all new buildings had teething problems and he was pleased the problem had been sorted and was fixed and the pupils would be back in on Friday.

The Folkestone Academy in Academy Lane replaced the town's Channel School.