Old asbestos-filled buildings will be removed at two Whittlesea primary schools as part of a state government program to improve school safety.

The government is set to spend $2.84 million at Lalor North Primary School and $2.1 million at Thomastown East Primary School to replace the buildings.

Thomastown MP Bronwyn Halfpenny said the schools would receive new modular buildings as part of the government’s Asbestos Removal Program.

The $155 million program will demolish school buildings that contain asbestos and replace them with permanent buildings.

The program follows an audit of 11,712 government schools, which found 497 had buildings containing high-risk asbestos.

The two Whittlesea schools will work with the Victorian School Building Authority in coming weeks to allow the work to take place. The new buildings will be built off-site and delivered to the schools so teaching is not interrupted and on-site safety risks are reduced.

“I can’t wait for these much-needed upgrades to Lalor North Primary School and Thomastown Primary School,”  Ms Halfpenny said. “Using modular buildings increases flexibility for schools and reduces the interruptions to students, staff and teaching programs.”

The government is also set to upgrade the buildings at two Craigieburn schools, with Yuroke MP Ros Spence saying the government had recently awarded construction contracts for works at Craigieburn South Primary School and Craigieburn Secondary College.

The works, which will cost $522,000, will include maintenance works across the two schools.

“As our community grows, we’re acquiring land for future schools, building new facilities and supporting our great local schools,” Ms Spence said. “This investment will help make sure that local school facilities meet the needs of students and families in Craigieburn.”