OTLEY'S secondary school has rejected claims that IT problems have been compromising student safety.

An anonymous message sent to this newspaper claimed that Prince Henry's Grammar School's IT systems have been 'in chaos' since the start of January.

It goes on to say that the situation has been created by cost-cutting and is causing serious problems for teachers and students, including:

*Registers not being able to be taken, creating safeguarding issues around student presence/absence

*Teachers and students being unable to log in, causing 'significant disruption' to classes

*Staff being unable to access prepared work.

The school, while accepting that it has been experiencing issues, insists the situation is under control and that it is in fact carrying out major investment in IT.

Headteacher Janet Sheriff said: "The IT issues experienced recently are not a result of any lack of funding, or staffing issues – it is an unfortunate technical failure.

"This has been managed by using paper based systems, where necessary. Teaching and administration staff have worked extremely hard as a team to ensure that student safety and safeguarding has not been compromised.

"The school is in the process of investing more than £20,000 in IT improvements. The highly experienced and well qualified IT experts working at the school are confident that this will bring stability and rapid improvement to the IT systems."

Addressing a further claim that scheduled inspections had been cancelled due to the technical problems, she added: "Some of our internal monitoring has been postponed in recognition of how hard staff have worked to overcome IT disruptions, and to allow staff to focus on delivering the high quality teaching which is the norm at Prince Henry’s."

The person who raised the issue, however, insists that safeguarding of students has been jeopardised.

They said: "We have had multiple occasions when we simply have not known who is present and who is absent."