VANDALISM on schools in the Kingdom cost Fife taxpayers £320,935 last year.
Fife Council’s massive repair bill was larger than any other in Scotland, coming in way ahead of second-placed Glasgow, which had to pay out £223,520.
The vandals responsible for the damage at schools have been criticised.
But some claim the money used for repairs would have been better spent on children’s education.
The local authority recorded more than 1,000 incidents including thefts of lead which resulted in one school being decanted to a temporary campus until the damage was repaired.
Other incidents highlighted were £585 of damage to windows at Capshard Primary in Kirkcaldy and £1,111 worth of vandalism to Kinghorn Primary.
Council leader Peter Grant said the authority has been successful in bringing the bill for deliberate damage down from £750,000 in recent years.
Improved security such as CCTV in schools and new buildings which are more resistant to vandalism have also helped.
But Kirkcaldy MSP David Torrance said £321,000 was an “incredible” figure to be paying out on vandalism every year.
He said: “This is an absolute waste of money.
‘‘This could be re-invested and spent on Fife’s education system by employing more teachers and bringing more investment into schools.
‘‘Fife is the top Council in Scotland for vandalism in schools and this is not acceptable.”
Fife Council’s service manager Louise Playford said: “We take the issue of vandalism in schools very seriously as it can cause real disruption in our school communities.
‘‘Over the past few years we have improved security measures at a number of our schools with more CCTV cameras being installed and other systems being improved.
‘‘While we recognise that these costs are still significant, they have been reducing over recent years and we will continue to work with local police to try and prevent incidents where possible.”