Residents demand a new primary school
NINE out of 10 people questioned want a new primary school on Ashford’s Goat Lees estate.
A total 90 per cent of local respondents to a public consultation have called for a 210place school on the new estate near Kennington.
One resident in the survey for Kent County Council commented: “There are clearly more people moving into the area, particularly from London. With the high-speed link this will increase and demand for school places will be at a premium.”
Another added: “The need for a primary school in Goat Lees is well-founded and would become a vitally important for a growing population.”
The survey results will be debated by KCC’s school organisation advisory board (SOAB) next Thursday .
A report to the committee points out that 30,000 new houses are planned in Ashford by 2030 and the Goat Lees estate, completed in 2005, produced 732 homes. But the neighbouring three primary schools are nearly full with just 18 spare places and a shortfall over the next five years is predicted.
Forecasts also show that four extra reception classes may need to be opened by 2013.
The report says that a new school would cost £4 million and be opened in September 2012.
The proposal already has support from local county and borough councillors and Ashford MP Damian Green.
The survey results followed a public meeting at The Towers School in Kennington on November 25 and the end of the first public consultation on December 15.
The SOAB is being asked to give its views on the scheme and on January 28 the issue will come before the KCC cabinet.
If the scheme is still supported bidders will be invited to compete to develop the project and another public consultation takes place in the summer.