Building work is ready to begin on a major expansion of a Nottingham school to further improve specialist education provision in the City.
The £4m development project at Westbury Academy, in Chingford Road, will officially start on May 30 and see it increase from 45 to 120 places.
Wates Construction has been appointed by Nottingham City Council to carry out the project via the East Midlands Property Alliance (empa).
Initial refurbishment of the building will take place over the summer term and is due to be completed by the end of August in time for the pupils coming back in September. The main extension works will be finished in the summer term 2018.
The investment will provide further options in Nottingham for children with additional needs. As well as creating extra places at schools like Westbury, this has also included developing specialist provision within mainstream schools.
The project is part of Nottingham City Council’s £41.9m expansion programme of schools since 2009 to create thousands of extra school places in Nottingham. This will have provided more than 4,000 additional primary places once all year groups are full by 2022.
Councillor Sam Webster, Portfolio Holder for Business, Education and Skills at Nottingham City Council, said: “I’m delighted to see that work at Westbury is due to start imminently and we look forward to seeing the end result next year.
“When we started out on this expansion programme, it was essential to make sure that top-class facilities are made available to all pupils in Nottingham, including those with special educational needs and disabilities.
“As well as extending current special schools, we are working to introduce further specialist provision within mainstream schools in the City to support those parents who want more options available to them.
“Our ambition remains to ensure that all pupils in Nottingham attend a good school, close to home and our on-going expansion strategy means that we are creating more places to achieve this goal.”
Westbury is Wates’s latest education project in the East Midlands, following the recent completion of the multi-million pound Arnold Hill Academy, the delivery of Nottingham City Council’s £5.7m Bluecoat Academy Primary School project and the £3.1m new-build extension to Mellers Primary School.
John Carlin, Business Unit Director of Wates Construction Midlands, said: “We are very happy to once again be working with Nottingham City Council as it fulfills its responsibility to accommodate the city’s growing need for increased school places.
“Our appointment to Westbury Academy is further evidence of our standing as a leading contractor for the education sector, which has seen Wates successfully deliver more than 70 school projects across the Midlands in the past five years.
“During our time on the project we also hope to inspire and encourage young people to take part in the various training activities that will be held as part of the scheme.”
John Dyson, Executive Headteacher of Westbury Academy, said: “We’re really excited by this expansion at Westbury and look forward to work starting at the end of the month.
“Increasing capacity from 45 to 120 places will mean that more parents can access this specialist provision in Nottingham City.”