WATCHDOGS have slammed a scheme to replace the 'worst school building in the district'.

But the Audit Commission report on Whitcliffe Road First and Nursery School in Cleckheaton does not go far enough, says Batley and Spen MP Labour Mike Wood.

The commission, which scrutinises councils' performance, hit out at Kirklees's failings over a replacement site.

The report says Kirklees made mistakes and poor decisions from the very start.

A new school is now expected to open in 18 months on land owned by Tesco at St Peg Lane in the town.

An earlier plan to move to a site at Rawfolds was rejected.

The commission says there was inadequate project management, costs were allowed to spiral and there were gaps and delays in the information officers gave councillors.

It also highlighted `inexplicable' periods of inactivity.

Mr Wood said: "Last week Cleckheaton councillor Kath Pinnock welcomed news that Tesco would not oppose plans to buy their land at St Peg Lane so a replacement school could be built.

"This week the behaviour and performance of officers working under her leadership is the subject of a damning report by the Audit Commission.

"It's in incredibly bad taste for Clr Pinnock to welcome Tesco's decision.

"Kirklees has consistently failed this school - and it was allowed to happen while she was in charge."

But Clr Pinnock, a Liberal Democrat, accused Mr Wood of scoring an own goal with his criticisms.

She said: "It was the then Labour administration that agreed to sign a project for the school to be refurbished, when it was absolutely pointless on such a small, sloping site.

"It was then astonishing that Labour and the Tories teamed up to turn down a move to the Rawfolds site without giving any reason."