Corby secondary school to get a £1m extension due to school places shortage

Corby Technical School and Brooke Weston Academy will add in extra Year 7 places from September.

Wednesday, 4th March 2020, 8:44 am
Corby Technical School will have a 1.2m extension to create new science labs, ICT suites and enlarge its dining and sports facilities.

A £1m extension is being built at a Corby secondary school to help the town cope with a shortage of school places.

Corby Technical School (CTS) will take on an extra 84 Year 7 students and create two new forms this September and in September 2021 in a bid to help the county council deliver its statutory requirement to deliver secondary education to all.

Its sister school Brooke Weston Academy, will also take on an extra six Year 7 pupils for two years and Corby’s new special school Red Kite Academy will also permanently increase its pupil number by twenty to 120.

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The town is facing a school places shortage because of a long delay in building a much needed new secondary school in the Weldon area of the borough which was announced by the Government back in 2016.

The report to go before the county council’s cabinet next week says that there have been difficulties in procuring a site for the new school and it is unlikely to open before September 2022.

Until then temporary ‘bulge’ classes will be set up and the county council, which acts as the Local Education Authority, is allocating £1.2 towards CTS which it will use to build new science labs, IT suites, make bigger its outdoor games area and changing rooms, enlarge its dining area and improve pedestrian access to the school.

The council says the cost of the work is being mitigated by the up to £900,000 it predicts would need to be spent on transport to take Corby children to other out-of-town schools over a six year period. Currently the council is bussing students out of Corby to Oundle and Uppingham to cope with the shortage situation.

Chief executive of the Brooke Weston Trust Andrew Campbell said: “Brooke Weston Trust was approached by the County Council to assist in providing more places for more Year 7 students in September 2020 and 2021. This is largely because other capacity the Council hoped would be on stream is not yet available. As a town centre school in the heart of the community, Corby Technical School is well placed to help. The majority of students will be placed there with a very small number going to Brooke Weston Academy. Both schools are currently rated outstanding by Ofsted.”

The number of Year 7 forms at CTS will rise to eight. As an academy trust BWT did not have to consult on the decision to temporarily increase its pupil numbers.

The county council will also spend £700,000 on a new stand along sixth form block at the Red Kite Academy on the Beanfield estate. The report says that if the 20 extra places had not been created within the school it would have cost £2.8m over six years in out of county placement and transport costs.