Vandal attacks cost schools thousands

Pupils and staff in front of the smashed windows at St Joseph's Primary School.
Pupils and staff in front of the smashed windows at St Joseph's Primary School.
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Schools have faced a string of vandalism attacks by yobs who smashed windows and trashed play equipment.

Neighbouring Moorthorpe Primary and St Joseph’s Catholic Primary schools are both counting the cost of the damage.

Moorthorpe Primary School has been targeted by vandals for the second time this year.Claire Turner of the senior leadership team.

Moorthorpe Primary School has been targeted by vandals for the second time this year.Claire Turner of the senior leadership team.

The most recent incidents saw both schools targeted by vandals who smashed windows after getting into the school grounds.

At St Joseph’s, on Barnsley Road, classrooms had to be boarded up again just three days after windows were replaced following the last vandalism incident.

Police said the attack happened between July 7 and 10. Suspects were seen on the school roof before fleeing the scene.

School administrator Natasha Kelly said it followed an incident in May when children’s play equipment was trashed in the nursery at St Joseph’s.

Mrs Kelly said: “The windows were replaced last Thursday. Then children came back to the classroom on Monday to find it boarded up again.”

“In the hall there was a massive shard of glass hanging quite precariously.”

Around nine windows were smashed in the latest incident at Moorthorpe Primary School, on nearby Regent Street.

Police said they were called following reports of vandalism on Sunday, July 9.

Headteacher Pauline Pollard said a similar vandalism incident had happened at Easter.

Mrs Pollard said: “Because they are reinforced windows they are shattered, but not broken.

“To replace them it is going to cost thousands of pounds. This is the second incident we’ve had.

“Parents and pupils are really upset. We spoke to the children about it and they are really sad that people would come and damage our school.

“For staff it’s devastating to come back to work and find all this damage.”

West Yorkshire Police appealed for any witnesses to either incidents to call them on 101.

Anyone with information about the St Joseph’s damage should quote crime reference 13170314254.

The reference number for the vandalism at Moorthorpe Primary is 13170314664.