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Consultation Document Relocation and Enlargement of Takeley Primary School April 2010


Introduction Essex County Council is committed to securing the appropriate supply of school places. The Governing Body of Takeley Primary School and Essex County Council are considering the expansion and relocation of this School to address population increases within Takeley, primarily from signiďŹ cant current and proposed housing development at Priors Green, Takeley. Views from the local community are very important to this process so that we can ensure the best possible opportunities are provided for young children in Takeley. Please take a moment to read this leaet and make your views known by submitting the enclosed response form or by writing to the County Council.

Councillor Stephen Castle Cabinet Member for Education & the 2012 Games

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Dear Staff, Parents/Carers and Members of the Local Community The Governing Body of Takeley Primary School, together with the County Council, is consulting on a proposal to relocate Takeley Primary School to a new site in enlarged premises on the Priors Green development and to increase the size of the School from 210 places to 330 places with effect from September 2012. The total number of pupils in Takeley village is predicted to increase over time, primarily from significant current and proposed housing development at Priors Green, Takeley; the existing school buildings have insufficient capacity and facilities to accommodate future growth. The provision of a school site on the Priors Green development has provided an opportunity for the School to relocate and expand its capacity in new state of the art buildings, providing an environment that offers first-class facilities, resources and learning opportunities for the young children in the village.

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Why is there a need for more primary school places in Takeley? Essex County Council has a duty to ensure that there are sufficient school places for children and young people living in the County. In order to do this the County Council monitors birth rates, new housing developments and patterns of parental preference for schools in particular areas. This information is used to forecast pupil numbers for groups of schools and to decide whether there are sufficient places to meet demand in particular areas of the county. The existing Takeley Primary School is a 210 place primary school that serves the village community. There is currently sufficient capacity at the school to meet existing local demand for school places, although certain Year groups are at capacity; however, there are a significant number of new dwellings (in the region of 850) completed, underway or planned in Takeley. Forecasts for the next five years show that the current surplus places will be taken up by children moving into the houses on the new development and additional school places will be required to accommodate future growth. The following table shows that by 2014, with an adjustment for additional pupils that could be expected from new housing developments, there is predicted to be a deficit of 113 primary school places in the village.

Capacity of Takeley

Number on Roll Actual Forecast

Surplus/deficit of places

2009

2014

2009

2014

2014*

2009

2014

2014*

210

210

195

172

323

15

38

-113

* With housing Source (The draft Essex School Organisation Plan 2009-2014)

Why relocate Takeley Primary School? The Governing Body recognise that the existing Takeley Primary School has neither the site capacity nor the appropriate facilities to accommodate the increase in pupil numbers that is expected in the village over the next five years. The current School buildings are over 20 years old and the School is currently using temporary classrooms to meet the capacity. The Governing Body also recognise that the proposed expansion plans of Stansted Airport, should they to go ahead, would require noise insulation and mitigation measures to be provided to the existing School buildings to maintain an acceptable environment for teaching purposes. Considerable further financial investment would therefore be required to expand and improve

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the current school’s buildings, site and access. This is money that could be better spent towards the cost of new state of the art premises for the School. The deficit number of 113 places predicted for 2014 does not justify a requirement for an additional 210 place (one form entry) primary school, although should Takeley Primary School remain on the current site, Essex County Council would have to consider provision of a separate school on the Priors Green site at some point in the future in order to ensure future local demand for places is met. Maintaining a single school for the village of Takeley and the resultant community cohesion has been a major factor in leading the Governing Body to conclude that relocating the school to the new site in new, state of the art buildings is the best way forward for existing and future pupils. The expansion of Takeley Primary School from 210 to 330 places would be sufficient to accommodate the additional pupils predicted from new housing for the foreseeable future. However, for housing developments of this size there is the potential for additional growth and the new buildings would be designed to allow for an increase in capacity to 420 places in the future, if local demand for places warrants this in the longer term. The relocation of Takeley Primary School will enable development of facilities for a more integrated approach to the provision of education and children’s services in state of the art buildings. It would enable ICT resources to be developed at the heart of a personalised learning approach and enable the provision of a high quality physical environment that will help to engage children and their families, improve learning opportunities and provide a strong foundation for well-supported and sustained education.

What would be the size of the School and the admission arrangements? The Governing Body is the admissions authority for the School. The School would increase in size from 210 to 330 places, which would equate to 45 places each year. The priority admissions area and admissions criteria would remain the same, with priority being given to looked after children, children residing in the priority admissions area, and siblings of children already at the School.

If the proposal goes ahead, what would the timescale be for transferring the School and opening on the new premises? It is proposed that the School would move to its new location in September 2012. Meeting this timescale will, however, be dependent on services being provided by the developer to the proposed site and the land being transferred into County Council ownership at the appropriate time.

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Proposed relocation of Takeley Primary School, Takeley

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Will the Headteacher, Staff and Governing Body change? No, this proposal is about relocating the school into new buildings on a new site and making it larger. The headteacher, staff and governing body will remain as they are now and will transfer with the school and the pupils.

How can I make my views known? Parents, staff and members of the local community are encouraged to ask questions and express their view on the proposal outlined in this leaet. At this stage no decision has been made and all views received will be considered prior to a decision being taken as to whether to go ahead with this proposal. In addition to parents, staff, pupils and the local community the Governing Body and County Council will also be seeking the views of other interested parties, such as local pre-schools and local councils. Drop in sessions will also be arranged at the school during the consultation period. Please contact the school on 01279 870541 for details of these and to make an appointment.

Your Comments You may wish to write to the County Council with your comments. This will assist the Governing Body and the County Council to reach an understanding of the views held. You may use the form attached, or write separately to the address provided overleaf, or email to: admin.strategy@essex.gov.uk. All written comments should be received by the County Council by 24 May 2010. The County Council handles information in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998. Your answers to this consultation will only be used to assess the community’s view of the proposal and not for any other purpose. We will not give information about you to anyone outside the County Council. If you have any questions about the consultation process or the proposal please call Julie Aiken, School Organisation Project Manager, on 01245 437366 or alternatively contact the Chair of Governors of Takeley Primary School via the School.

What happens next? The process for relocating a school in enlarged premises involves consultation with the local community, other local schools, the District and Town Councils, the local MP and other interested parties. This consultation period will end on 24 May 2010. At the end of this consultation period the views expressed during the consultation, both at the public/parent drop in sessions and in the form of written or electronic responses, will be considered by the

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Governing Body of Takeley Primary School and a decision on whether or not to proceed to the next stage will then be taken by the County Council. Having considered all of the views expressed during the consultation period, if the County Council decides to proceed with the proposals a Statutory Notice will be published to enlarge the School. The Notice would be published in the local press and displayed at the main entrances to Takeley Primary School and at other conspicuous places in the community. There is no requirement to publish a Statutory Notice to relocate the School as the new site is within two miles of the existing site. However, as the proposals to enlarge and relocate the School are linked, the relocation would be included in the Notice as an explanatory note. This will be followed by a further four week period during which formal comments or objections can be made on the enlargement of the School, after which a ďŹ nal decision will be taken by the County Council. If a decision is taken to enlarge and relocate the school then detailed design work can start on the new premises which will be managed and led by the Governing Body. There will be further consultations and stakeholder workshops as part of the design process, including preparation of a trafďŹ c impact study and subsequently a planning application with the necessary related consultation process. If the school does relocate the future of the existing site is unknown at this stage. However, any future reuse will be subject to consultation and any relevant planning processes.

Timescale This consultation period will run from 26 April 2010 to 24 May 2010 Date

Activity

26 April 2010

Consultation document distributed

24 May 2010

End of consultation period

June 2010

Decision taken whether to proceed to next stage

June 2010

Publication of statutory notice (if decision above is to proceed to next stage)

July 2010

End of period for representations

July 2010

Decision on proposal is made by Essex County Council

* September 2012

School relocates to new site and increases in size

* This stage will only apply if the proposal is approved by the County Council.

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Response Form RE: Proposed relocation and enlargement of Takeley Primary School Please indicate below with a

✓ whether or not you support the proposal

I/we support the proposal to relocate Takeley Primary School to a new site on the Priors Green development and increase the size from 210 places to 330 places. I/we do not support the proposal to relocate Takeley Primary School to a new site on the Priors Green development and increase the size from 210 places to 330 places.

Please provide below any supporting information for your preference above and/or any other comments that you might wish to make.

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Name:

Address:

Interest group: (e.g. parent, teacher, member of the local community etc.)

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Please return this form by 24 May 2010 using the FREEPOST address below or hand in to your child’s school, whose staff will pass it on to the County Council. Takeley Consultation School Organisation and Planning FREEPOST CL 3636 County Hall Chelmsford CM1 1XZ Alternatively, email admin.strategy@essex.gov.uk to make your views known.

Thank you for your response.

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This document is issued by Essex County Council Schools, Children and Families. You can contact us in the following ways: By post: Essex County Council, School Organisation and Planning Schools, Children and Families Directorate PO Box 4261 County Hall Chelmsford, CM1 1GS By telephone: 01245 436 726 By email: admin.strategy@essex.gov.uk

The information contained in this leaet can be translated,

Published April 2010.

DS09_2107

and/or made available in alternative formats, on request.


Takeley Consultation