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Police arrest 14-year-old over Woodmill High School fire

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logon - Police arrest 14-year-old over Woodmill High School fire

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Media captionMajor fire at Fife high school

Police have arrested a 14-year-old boy in connection with a fire at a Dunfermline high school.

More than 80 firefighters worked through the night at Woodmill High School after the alarm was raised at about 17:05 BST on Sunday.

No one was hurt but pupils have been told to stay home as Fife Council prepares a plan for the school’s 1,400 children.

The teenager is due to appear at Dunfermline Sheriff Court on Tuesday.

Police thanked members of the public who came forward with information in relation to the incident.

Fay Sinclair, convener of Fife Council’s education and children’s services committee said the fire had spread from the additional support needs department to the main building.

She told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “The council’s emergency teams will be meeting this morning to look at what are the options here. We’re talking about 1,400 pupils displaced from the school, at least for the short term.”

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Marcin Gromadzinski

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The extent of the damage could be seen on Monday morning

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Marcin Gromadzinski

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Local people survey the damage the morning after the fire

Ms Sinclair said it would be difficult to transfer pupils to other nearby schools as many were already at full capacity.

“Dunfermline has been a rapidly growing town over recent years. All of the schools are very full, so there’s not an immediate place to move these pupils to,” she said.

“The teams will be meeting today, the head teacher will be meeting all the staff today to look at how we can get these pupils accommodated as quickly as possible.”

The school’s head teacher Sandy McIntosh tweeted that staff were “devastated” by what had happened.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service asked people to avoid the area to allow access by the emergency services.

‘Large and complex incident’

Deputy assistant chief officer Stuart Stevens, the incident commander, said: “We have worked through the night in challenging conditions to contain this fire and prevent further spread within the building.

“Through effective planning, we have now surrounded the fire and we are working to extinguish the flames.

“However, this remains a large and complex incident and we will remain in attendance for some time.”

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Dave Rogers

He added: “Our advice remains that members of the public should avoid the area to allow access for emergency service vehicles.

“I would like to thank our partners, the community and our firefighters for their professionalism and dedication as we work to bring this incident to a safe conclusion.”

Crews remained on the scene on Monday morning as the damage to the building was revealed in the daylight.

Deputy First Minister John Swinney tweeted his support: “Terribly sorry with the news @WoodmillHigh. @scotgov has been in contact with @FifeCouncil and will discuss next steps. Good wishes to all in the school community at this tough time.”

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