A HEADTEACHER says she is “devastated” to delay the start of term due to unfinished building work at her school.

The planned expansion works at Mayflower Primary School, in Dovercourt, have been thrown into “disarray”.

Mayflower governors and staff have been left with no option than to delay the start of term so the building work can be completed on time.

The pupils have been offered child care places locally for the two additional days, for working parents.

A school spokesman said: “We were left with no option but to delay the start of term - the school simply isn’t ready.

“Some of the new remodelled classrooms are complete, but there is no office and no computer system up and running.

“It just isn’t safe to have the pupils here yet.”

Headteacher Elizabeth Bartholomew said she is devastated by the delay.

She said: “We even made provision for the building work to commence early, before the end of the summer term to avoid exactly this situation.

“The parents will, quite rightly, be angry, but it is completely out of our control.”

The planned works were commissioned by Essex County Council in order to increase the size of the school.

The building work was undertaken to ensure existing class bases were big enough to take the increased number of pupils expected over the coming years.

Mayflower Primary School still housed old 1970s sinks and cupboards from its days as a secondary school and was long overdue a refit.

The new classrooms will be spacious and air conditioned, with new facilities on each floor meaning staff and pupils will no longer have to walk down two flights of stairs to visit the toilets.

The school has written to the parents explaining the situation and has moved the start of term date to Monday.