Ilford Jewish and Avanti Court school pupils to share facilities for one year

Pupils at a Hindu primary will be sharing facilities with a Jewish school for up to a year after “delays in paperwork” held up building work.

The Avanti Court Primary School, the borough’s first Hindu school, is set to open on the site of Ilford Jewish Primary School (IJPS) in Carlton Drive, Barkingside in September.

But chairman of IJPS’ governing body Howard Kemp said building work “should have been started two years ago” for its move to the grounds of King Solomon High School in Forest Road, Barkingside, to be on course to finish this year.

He told the Recorder delays in the complex legal process held up the start of construction work at the site, and it was likely the Hindu school’s first Year 7 intake would be sharing the same site with them for up to a year.

“We’ll have to look at things such as restructuring play times for the playground, and of course temporarily having to move some classes,” said Mr Kemp.

“The parents have been informed but we haven’t told the pupils yet.”

But he insisted the faith school was looking at the bright side of being able to learn and appreciate each other’s faiths.

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“There’s a lot of ideas we share so it’s going to be a great experience for the children and staff,” he added.

An Avanti Court spokesman said: “We are excited about being able to share the school with the Ilford Jewish Primary school pupils, as there is a lot we can both learn about each others’ faiths.

“We will also have the benefit of the school’s strong links with the community,” he added.