£20m for school improvements
New primary school places will be created with a £20m investment.
The work will involve expanding and improving three primary schools in the central area of Slough, which has experienced one of the highest birth rates in recent years. These are Claycots Primary (Town Hall site), St Mary’s CE Primary and James Elliman Academy - pictured below.
The schools have worked with the council to provide four additional reception classes for September 2015 and 2016 intake and these are currently being accommodated in temporary buildings. In total, the three projects will create 840 new primary school places.
In partnership with Slough Urban Renewal (SUR), the council and the schools have worked together to ensure the redevelopment plans not only create new school places but also provide enhanced learning environments with improved teaching spaces, dining halls and libraries.
Councillor Sabia Hussain, commissioner for health and social care, said: “Ensuring Slough children have access to good quality education is a priority for us and while Slough faces unprecedented pressure on school places we have always managed to ensure every child is given a school place – something we are very proud of.
“As the council is unable to build new schools, we can only provide new school places through expansion projects and these can only be delivered with support from our local schools who have always stepped up when needed. I would like to thank our primary schools for their help.”
Some of the additional improvements to be made as part of the building works include a new entrance and sports hall for St Mary’s Primary, a bigger dining area and playground for James Elliman Academy and a new sports hall and school kitchen for Claycots Primary (Town Hall site) - pictured above.
The expansion projects are being funded from the basic need grant funding which is provided annually by the government to meet the shortfall of places in an area.
This project is likely to represent the last large scale expansion project planned in Slough’s primary schools for the time being.
A new all-through free school is due to open next year and together with these projects, which will be complete by the end of 2017, will provide enough reception classes for the next few years.