SCHOOL children were left in tears when bailiffs barged into their school and took the desks from underneath their noses.
The shocking scene took place in a private school in the Chamartin neighbourhood of Madrid after a court embargoed the school’s property.
It came after the state took the decision to act after the school, Santa Illa, was left unable to pay a huge 992,000 euro social security debt.
Teachers and students watched in shock as chairs, whiteboards and even bookshelves were loaded into a truck by the bailiffs, who were guarded by police officers.
“They started removing the furniture with the children still present,” said Juan Manuel Muñoz, the father of a five-year-old student at the bilingual school, which has 160 pupils aged between three and 17.
“Some of the teachers were having panic attacks while a number of the kids were crying.”
Meanwhile another parent, who described the incident as ‘outrageous,’ said some of the smaller children didn’t know what was going on.
“The parents have had to lie to their children, saying how good it was that they were changing the furniture,” he explained.
A spokesperson for the Department of Social Security said the school had received ‘plenty of prior warning’.
He added that it had been a last resort after the school had ‘ignored requests to provide a list of school property to serve as a guarantee of payment.’
However Esperanza Aguirre, the PP president for Madrid, has since described the scenes as ‘lamentable’ and called for an investigation into who exactly ordered the embargo.
She ordered that the furniture was returned and the children have now been allowed to return to school, although the school’s long-term future remains uncertain.