Posted on Tuesday 7th April 2020
More than £26 million is being allocated to build new schools and upgrade others in Staffordshire this financial year.
Millions of pounds are to be spent this year building new schools and upgrading others in Staffordshire.
More than £26 million is being allocated to refurbish classrooms, improve facilities and reduce energy emissions, as well as providing new schools in Tamworth and Uttoxeter.
Philip White, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Learning and Employability, said:
It is essential that pupils have access to good, local schools as it is widely accepted that the quality of a young person’s surroundings can have a huge effect on their academic performance.
As well as expanding existing schools and building new ones to meet the demands of a growing, successful county, we are committed to doing the best we can with a rolling programme of investment in maintaining our existing buildings.”
New projects to keep pace with the growing demand for school places include a Primary school at Anker Valley, Tamworth, and a First school in north west Uttoxeter.
Both schools are expected to open in autumn 2021, with space for one class per academic year.
Part of the maintenance work includes upgrading heating systems to replace old pipes, install new controls which monitor energy use, improve insulation and fit LED lighting.
Philip White added:
Energy bills are the biggest burden on a school’s budget after staff wages, so we make sure new schools incorporate the latest technology.
With our existing, older buildings we have a double purpose of cutting costs wherever possible and reducing our carbon footprint as part of the county council’s commitment to reducing CO2 emissions.”
Two other areas prioritised for investment in existing schools are developing more capacity to support children with Special Educational Needs, Disability (SEND) and improving the quality and design of old toilet blocks.
A report recommending the investment, to be considered by the County Council’s cabinet next week, says the authority is analysing the data on children with SEND to identify where there are needs in provision as part of its policy of educating more within Staffordshire.
Implementation would begin after the Coronavirus crisis passes.