EXPANSION APPROVED: Plans for Short Heath Junior School given green light
A Willenhall school will be welcoming more than 100 new children on its roll over the coming years after expansion plans were approved.
Planners at Walsall Council have given the go-ahead to Short Heath Junior School, in Pennine Way to create a block that will house four new classrooms, a hygiene room and two toilets.
This is being done to enable the school to increase its pupil numbers by 50 per cent, with a total of 120 extra places being made available over the next three years.
Each September, starting this year, will see an extra 30 children join the school up until 2024.
The proposal will also see an extra eight members of staff taken on over the same period of time – taking the total number to 40 at the school.
School representatives said this development, which involves an extension to the existing building, would help meet a need for more primary school places in the local area.
Planning agent Baily Garner said: “Short Heath Junior School currently caters for pupils between the ages of seven and 11. The school is currently two-form entry and has a capacity for 240 pupils.
“The local authority has reviewed and identified the specific need to develop necessary local and area-wide places to satisfy demand and thereby allow (it) to meet its statutory duties.
“Short Heath will increase its PAN by 30 pupils each year from September 2021 until 2024. This means the school ‘s pupil numbers will have increased by 120, taking the school’s capacity to 360.
“The proposal looks to provide teaching classrooms for these pupils in a permanent new build extension to an existing stand alone unit.
“The proposal seeks avoiding negative impact on neighbouring properties. The application is a carefully considered, high quality scheme tailored to its location and to meet the school’s requirements.”
A transport study concluded that there was sufficient parking provision at the school to cater for the extension, while there were also existing bus and cycle route services and no history of road safety issues in the area.
Words: Gurdip Thandi, Local Democracy Reporter
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