A school in west Reading will undergo a £2.7m renovation after councillors approved the government-funded work earlier this week.

Major refurbishment work will take place at the original 1950s block at St Michael’s Primary School, on Dee Road.

The works are wholly funded by a capital grant from the Department for Education as part of the priority schools building programme.

The council had initially been awarded £2.41 million but this has now been upped to £2.72 million to meet the anticipated costs; all funds must be spent by March 31 2021.

Councillor Ashley Pearce, lead member for Education, said: “This is more investment.

“We have already secured investment for Phoenix and Caversham Primary recently.

“This has got very positive environmental implications.

“The school will save money, which is going to be good for them, but they are going to be more environmenntally-friendly which will help us in our climate emergency.”

 The work, which includes recladding the two-storey block and new fire escape doors, was agreed by RBC’s Policy Committee on Monday (July 15) and will be undertaken by E W Beard Ltd.

Other renovations include upgrading windows, doors, heating and lighting, as well as a new accessible toilet.

The Policy commitee report states that updating lighting to LED and more efficient heating will reduce the school’s spend on energy and the council’s carbon footprint, supporting the climate emergency drive towards zero carbon.

Councillor Graeme Hoskin added: “This has been an ongoing issue for a long period of time, particularly the windows and roofing.

“I am really delighted to see this investment going into a school which is coming on leaps and bounds.”

St Michael’s will remain open and operational during the works.

Councillors also approved a £2.4 million programme of heating and electrical installations across Reading’s community schools and nurseries.

The programme is expected to save schools money, with less repair call outs and lower energy bills, as a result of newer and more efficient systems.