£160m renovations for English schools
More than 11,500 pupils across the country start the school year in state-of-the-art new buildings thanks to multi-million pound refurbishment work, Schools Minister, Lord Nash, announced on 5 September 2015.
As part of the biggest wave to date, 22 schools are set to re-open this month under the Government’s flagship Priority School Building Programme (PSBP). The programme is part of a continued drive to ensure that pupils, regardless of birth or background, have access to excellent schools.
The PSBP sets out to address the individual needs of schools in the worst physical condition in the country, transforming them so pupils and teachers benefit from improved facilities including world class classrooms, multi-purpose halls and state of the art drama studios.
Before this September, 27 schools had already reopened under the first phase of PSBP, and this term a further 22 will reopen as a result of more than £160m investment. Over the 2 phases of the PSBP, 537 schools will be transformed in projects worth a total of £4.4bn.
Among the schools opening in September is the Thomas Gainsborough School in Suffolk. The school has a rich tradition in art and the top-storey art rooms with a terrace overlooking the Suffolk countryside provide stunning views to inspire pupils and enhance learning.
Thanks to the PSBP, school buildings are being rebuilt faster and cheaper than those built under the previous school building initiative – Building Schools for the Future (BSF). Under BSF it took 3 years for construction work to begin. This was slashed to 1 year for the PSBP, with projects costing around a third less.
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