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Shetland students safe after quake

FIVE youngsters from Shetland are safe and well after being caught up in the earthquake that devastated the New Zealand city of Christchurch on Tuesday.

At least 65 people have died as a result of the quake, which happened during the lunch hour while the city was at its busiest.

The five Shetlanders had been in the city for the past two weeks as part of the international Learning School, working on a project looking at the future of education.

Three co-ordinators Greg McCarron, Lizzie Ratter and Jenny Fraser are all in their 20s, while Lindsey Manson and Cheryl Cluness are both 18.

They are working alongside two 17 year old Swedish students Max Engstrom and Carl Larsson.

Stuart Hay, who set up the Learning School 12 years ago at Lerwick’s Anderson High School, said none of the students had been hurt. The school they were working in had closed early for a teachers’ trade union meeting and they were all on their way home when the quake struck.

Mr Hay said: “I am absolutely relieved that our students are well and safe. I am sure they are shaken but I am equally sure they have lived through a bit of history. It’s the Learning School on a different dimension!”