School plea

Cam­paign­ers state their case as pupil num­bers set to jump

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Edel Ke­nealy

Homes planned as part of the New­ton Com­mu­nity Growth area mean a new se­condary school is a must for Cam­bus­lang East, cam­paign­ers have said.

Fig­ures ob­tained by the Re­former re­veal the coun­cil ex­pect the houses to bring the se­condary school serv­ing the area close to ca­pac­ity.

The 1,725 houses planned as part of the New­ton Com­mu­nity Growth area mean a new se­condary school is a must for Cam­bus­lang East, cam­paign­ers have said.

Fig­ures ob­tained by the Re­former re­veal that 1,125 of the planned homes in New­ton have not yet been granted plan­ning per­mis­sion.

But South La­nark­shire Coun­cil says the ad­di­tional houses have been fac­tored into the pro­jected pupil num­bers for lo­cal schools, which are al­ready burst­ing at the seams.

Should the homes - part of the £1.3bil­lion Glas­gow City Deal get the go-ahead as ex­pected, an ad­di­tional 698 young­sters will have to be squeezed into lo­cal schools.

And while the New­ton development has been aligned with the catch­ment area for Ud­dingston Gram­mar, that school could strug­gle to cope with the num­ber of se­condary school chil­dren ex­pected with a development of this scale.

Us­ing the coun­cil’s own for­mula for pro­jected school num­bers, it is es­ti­mated that space for an­other 295 chil­dren will be re­quired in se­condary schools; 222 at Ud­dingston Gram­mar and 73 at Trin­ity High School.

With the cur­rent school role at Ud­dingston Gram­mar 1,072, the ad­di­tional pupils from the New­ton area alone bring the pro­jected school roll to 1,294.

Al­though fall­ing within the school’s ca­pac­ity of 1,334, our fig­ures do not in­clude any other po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ments within the school catch­ment area in Ud­dingston.

Mean­while, pupil num­bers for Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang High Schools are ex­pected to rocket over the same seven-year pe­riod.

Cathkin High School is al­ready op­er­at­ing at full ca­pac­ity, of 1,093 stu­dents, and the re­cently ap­proved Gil­bert­field development will see an es­ti­mated 50 ad­di­tional young­sters aligned with the catch­ment area of that school.

It will also add an es­ti­mated 16 chil­dren to the school roll at Trin­ity High School, while the New­ton development will add an­other 73 chil­dren to Trin­ity.

Stonelaw High School is also ex­pected to be op­er­at­ing at full ca­pac­ity by 2023.

The fig­ures, ac­cord­ing to Cam­bus­lang East res­i­dents, are proof that a high school should be built in the area to not only pro­vide a lo­cal school for these chil­dren, but a fo­cus for the many hun­dreds who will call Cam­bus­lang East home.

Jackie Rinn, sec­re­tary of Half­way Com­mu­nity Coun­cil, said: “These fig­ures re­in­force our ar­gu­ment that we need a high school in Cam­bus­lang East.

“Fig­ures also show that Cam­bus­lang East gen­er­ates the most in coun­cil tax for the coun­cil. The area is burst­ing at the seams. We need a high school and a de­cent health cen­tre.”

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil’s head of ed­u­ca­tion Des Dick­son, said: “All po­ten­tial de­vel­op­ments in the Cam­bus­lang and Ruther­glen area have been fac­tored into the coun­cil’s pre­dicted pupil num­bers for both pri­mary and se­condary schools in the area.

“The pre­dic­tions for 2023 at this time show Cathkin High at 1,159, Stonelaw High at 1,499, Trin­ity High at 1,320 and Ud­dingston Gram­mar at 1,287.

“As part of our plan­ning prior to 2023 it is the coun­cil’s in­ten­tion to work with all these schools to re­view the ef­fi­cient op­er­at­ing of the school and iden­tify what im­prove­ments or ad­di­tional ac­com­mo­da­tion is re­quired to en­hance ca­pac­ity.

“We will con­tinue to mon­i­tor and re­view the pupil num­bers as we want to con­tinue to pro­vide high qual­ity learn­ing and teach­ing for the ben­e­fit of all young peo­ple in our schools.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.