TOP PRIMARY IS EXPANDING TO MEET DEMAND
Academy will create six new classrooms
ONE of Staffordshire’s top-performing primary schools has unveiled a £2.5 million expansion plan so it can help meet parental demand for places.
The proposals include a singlestorey extension at Bursley Academy, in Bradwell, that will provide an extra six classrooms and a dedicated library space.
This will free up room in the main building for a dance studio and a food technology area.
Other improvements are set to include wider corridors that children can navigate more easily and a new 42-space car park.
A planning application for the work has been submitted to Newcastle Borough Council. If planners approve the scheme, construction could start in February.
Principal Brian Wilkinson said: “This has been almost four years in the planning and we’ve spent a lot of time researching what we need to do to make it work properly.
“We want to try and create the space that parents have really been asking for.
“It would mean being able take another 15 children in each reception year.
“At the moment, the school is consistently oversubscribed.
“We get between 70 and 90 applications for 45 reception places and have to turn quite a few families away.”
Bursley, which came in the top 10 in Staffordshire for its SATS results in 2018, is hoping to expand its intake from September.
It would be able to cater for 420 pupils – an extra 105 – after the changes are phased in. It also has a 26-place nursery.
A document, drawn up by Entrust as part of the planning application, states: “The original school was built post-war, circa 1960, but has received several extensions and alterations during its lifetime.”
The latest project is being supported by a £2.3 million grant from the Education and Skills Funding Agency, with the academy providing some of the money itself.
A further bid for funding has also been submitted for additional work.
Mr Wilkinson added: “We are mindful of other schools in the local area, so we are expanding in a careful way.
“We want to bring the school building up to date and have the ability to meet the needs of our children.”
Bursley has also agreed an arrangement with Chesterton Community Sports College to use some of its sports provision if needed. The project will also see a hard play area relocated.