Plan to move Wigan special school takes another step forward after cabinet backing

The first phase of a 10-year plan to transform special educational needs provision in Wigan borough has been approved.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 2:22 pm
A consultation will be launched on rebuilding Hope School on Montrose Avenue

Wigan Council’s cabinet have agreed to proceed to consultation on plans to rebuild Hope School on a new site at Montrose Avenue at Central Park.

The consultation will look at the council’s plans to invest £10m of capital funding to increase capacity and improve facilities at the school.

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This is all part of the council’s long-term plan to ensure the needs of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are being met.

The proposed approach will be phased over ten years and includes creating more school places and building new schools where current facilities are outdated and need investment.

Earlier this year the council went to consultation on the 10-year plan with 82.7 per cent of people saying they agreed to relocating school provision where necessary and 67.9 per cent saying they felt the council’s proposals were in a good priority order.

The current Hope School site would be retained and reserved with the possibility of a primary school.

In parallel to this consultation the council is also considering other support and provision that is needed in the borough, for example resourced provision and its outreach support offer, and is working with schools and families to look at need and a suitable offer for the future.

Coun Jenny Bullen, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “This is a long-term plan which will ensure pupils get the very best education from schools which are modern and have the most up-to-date facilities.

“In some cases we are proposing to build new schools where the existing buildings need significant investment which will mean fantastic new facilities for our young people.

“We are already so proud of the brilliant provision we have in place and are confident this investment will put us in a strong position to meet future demand so our children and young people get the best education and support.

“It is also important that we continue to look at SEND provision in our mainstream schools to ensure that it is well resourced and meets the needs of our children and young people.”

The proposals over a 10-year period are:

Hope School. A proposal to build a new school on a new site at Montrose Avenue at Central Park.

Rowan Tree Primary School. A plan to build a new school on the current or a new site in Leigh.

Landgate School. A proposal to build a new school on the current or new site. Minor improvement works to be carried out to the existing school.

Willow Grove Primary School. A proposal to build a new school on the current or a new site. The available land would allow a new school to be built while maintaining the provision in the current buildings.

Oakfield High School. A plan to extend the school and carry out adjustments or provide off-site provision temporarily to meet high demand.

There are currently no proposals for Newbridge Learning Community School.