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Alderman Swindell school in Great Yarmouth faces axe under council merger plan to create new £6.4m facility

PUBLISHED: 13:05 13 June 2017 | UPDATED: 13:49 13 June 2017

Alderman Swindell Primary School in Great Yarmouth. Picture: James Bass

Alderman Swindell Primary School in Great Yarmouth. Picture: James Bass

People in north Yarmouth are being asked for their views on a bid to merge two primary schools to create a single £6.4m facility.

Under the proposal Norfolk County Council is looking to build a new 420-pupil school on the North Denes Primary School site and find a new use for the Alderman Swindell Primary School a stone’s throw away.

If all goes to plan pupils could be settling into their new classrooms by September 2020.

Letters have been sent home to families this week outlining the scheme and asking if they agree and for their views on the re-use of Adlerman Swindell.

The letter, seen by this paper, states that the consultation is “to ensure that we are making better use of existing buildings and to consider how we can improve them in the most cost-effective way.”

A new school, it says, would meet the need for school places and leave room to grow, adding: “The county council believes this will provide a modern school building, with facilities that support flexible learning environments and enhance pupils pride in their school.”

MORE: Two schools in Great Yarmouth Alderman Swindell and North Denes could close under plans for new ‘super primary’ school

Meanwhile, Alderman Swindell could have a future meeting the needs of children and young people who cannot be educated in mainstream school.

Its new role could involve allowing excluded students to stay in the area, or easing pressure on the number of special school spaces required with young people in this sector also having to travel long distances away from their community.

Keeping things as they are is said to be among the options.

However while the authority says the move makes financial sense some have signalled their opposition.

A Facebook page called Save Alderman Swindell is urging people to tick the “disagree” box and save it from the axe.

It says the consultation marks a U-turn on a £2.5m promise of investment following the first stage of re-organisation for all schools in Yarmouth to become all-through primary schools.

A series of drop-in events is being staged on Tuesday June 20, 5-6pm at North Denes, Thursday June 22, 2-3pm at Alderman Swindell, Tuesday June 27, 2.30-3.30pm at North Denes and Thursday June 29, 5-6pm at Alderman Swindell

Anyone with an interest is able to respond to the consultation with an option to email schoolreview@norfolk.gov.uk.

To respond online click here.
North Denes Primary School was rated “good” by Ofsted following its last visit in 2014 when it had 243 pupils.

Meanwhile Alderman Swindell was handed a “requires improvement” rating by inspectors last year.

It is listed as having 221 pupils and opened in 1929 to serve the growing Newtown area.

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