Cabinet approves £4.5m funding for new facilities at Kirklees schools
Kirklees Council will invest more than £4.5million in new facilities for schools in the district after the funding was agreed by cabinet members.
The plans aim to ensure all Kirklees families can access a school place and will benefit thousands of children for many years to come.
The biggest project will be at Manor Croft Academy in Dewsbury, where an expansion will take place so that the school can increase its pupil numbers by 30 per year group.
Cabinet has also approved vital works at Thornhill Community Academy, Westborough High School in Dewsbury, Headlands CE (VC) Junior, Infant and Nursery School in Liversedge, North Huddersfield Trust School, and Reinwood Infant and Nursery and Reinwood Juniors in Huddersfield.
Several secondary schools have welcomed extra pupils over recent years, accommodating short-term rises in demand across their local communities.
The new investment will help those schools to deal with higher numbers while also improving facilities for the longer term and supporting children to fulfil their potential.
Coun Carole Pattison, cabinet member for learning, aspiration and communities, said: “I am delighted the proposals have been passed by cabinet so that we can start the process of turning them into reality.
“This is another key step in helping our children to thrive and fulfil their potential in a high-quality school environment.
“I would like to thank all the local schools who have worked with us to accommodate more pupils whilst retaining a firm focus on doing what’s best for the children, young people and families of Kirklees.
“This is an investment in children both now and in the future.
"We are supporting pupils to achieve better outcomes and, thanks to improved facilities, we are helping schools staff to continue inspiring generations to come.”
Coun Paul Davies, cabinet member for corporate, said: “Whilst we all know the Covid-19 pandemic has brought immense challenges, the council remains highly ambitious to keep moving forward with investment in schools.
“The spending agreed by cabinet is for a range of different projects, all of which will make an important difference in enhancing facilities.
“New-build accommodation will be created with energy efficient materials and equipment, which also allows us to cut our carbon footprint.
“A wide range of age groups will benefit from these changes, all the way from nursery through to secondary school.
"We want the very best for all of our children and young people.”
The plans for Manor Croft Academy include six new classrooms, an extended dining room space and a larger car park.
The total cost of the works is an estimated £3.2million, with £500,000 provided by Delta Academies Trust, of which Manor Craft is a part. Cabinet members have agreed the remaining £2.7million.
Thornhill Community Academy has been taking in extra pupils for the last three years in order to meet additional demand for places. The plan is to invest £600,000 in improved dining facilities.
North Huddersfield Trust School needs extra toilet facilities at a cost of £250,000.
Westborough High School requires £100,000 of work to expand outdoor dining and to help the flow of pupils around school.
At Headlands CE (VC) Junior, Infant and Nursery School, £650,000 will be spent on replacing a modular building with a new, permanent block to ensure the school can keep its nursery provision.
At the shared site of Reinwood Infant and Nursery and Reinwood Juniors, £215,000 is needed for remodelling as pupil numbers return to normal levels.