Public views sought for school expansions in Calverley and Farsley
People are being invited to share their views on proposals to increase the number of reception places at schools in Calverley and Farsley
A public consultation is currently underway to discover people’s views on proposals to create more school places by making changes at Farsley Westroyd Infant school, Farsley Springbank Junior School and Calverley Church of England School.
The proposed expansions are part of a city-wide programme which is necessary to meet the increased demand for primary-age places caused by a rising birth rate and an increase in the number of families moving into certain areas of the city. Through this programme the council has already approved 1020 new reception places since 2009.
The latest proposals under consideration are:
• Changing Farsley Westroyd Infant School and Farsley Springbank Junior School into two primary schools, and;
• Expanding Calverley Church of England Primary School.
These changes would come into effect from September 2015 onwards. The proposals for the Farsley schools are linked, and the Calverley proposal is independent.
Leeds City Council has a legal duty to ensure there are sufficient school places for every child in the city, taking into account where those children live and which school they wish to attend. There has been an increase in the birth rate across Leeds for several years, as well as a rise in the number of houses being built in some areas. This means that the council needs to add more reception places to meet the additional demand.
Councillor Judith Blake, executive board member for children’s services at Leeds City Council, said:
“The increased demand for primary school places means we have to reassess the size of certain schools to ensure there will be places available to every child.
“Before making these decisions it is right that we ask for the views of the public as well as consulting with head teachers and governors at the schools involved.
“We have been working with schools and communities to create more school places since 2009 and schools which have already undergone expansion are progressing well. St. Bartholomew’s school in Armley which expanded in 2011 was named, earlier this month, as the top achieving school in the country compared to other similar schools.”
When developing proposals and deciding which schools to expand, the council must consider:
• local birth and housing data, to identify whereabouts in the city the extra places are needed;
• which schools have the physical capacity to be expanded;
• the availability of other council owned land and whether any of this land could contribute to the provision of places; and
• the impact that expanding one school might have on other schools in the area.
The formal consultation period ends on Friday 25 October 2013 and all views will be noted and considered and presented to the council’s executive board, which will make the final decision as to whether to proceed with the proposals. If they get the go ahead the changes will take place in September 2015.
There is a public consultation document on each proposal which is available to download from www.leeds.gov.uk or hard copies can be requested from Capacity Planning and Sufficiency Team, 10th Floor West, Merrion House, 110 Merrion Centre, Leeds LS2 8DT or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
For media enquiries, please contact:
Emma Whittell, Leeds City Council press office, on (0113) 2474713