WASELEY Hills High School has been chosen for Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s transformative school rebuilding programme – part of the plan to ‘level up’ the north and Midlands with the south.
In total 50 new schools are being rebuilt and 21 new free schools created as part of the £1billion investment.
Those selected, which include primary, secondary, special schools and a sixth-form college, will benefit from new, modern, energy efficient school buildings
The initial rebuilds and refurbishments will create modern education environments, providing everything from new classrooms and science labs, to sports halls and dining rooms. The schools being greener will also help the Government meet its net zero target.
The scheme is still in its very early days and it is not yet known how much investment Waseley will receive, exactly what it will provide or if it will increase capacity but it will be ‘substantial’ and ‘transformative’.
The school will now sit down with the planners to map out how it will take shape.
There is no timescale in place yet but work but some of the schools chosen as part of the Government’s scheme will start in the autumn and take two to three years.
Headteacher Alan Roll said: “We are absolutely delighted – it will be transformative in terms of the facilities and curriculum we offer and will improve the life chances of the children of Rubery and Bromsgrove.
“It’s also hard to maintain and heat the school at the moment, particularly with some of those pre-war buildings – this will change all that and give us new, modern, energy efficient buildings.”
Mr Roll praised Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid for his input as part of the bid.
“We were always confident we had a strong bid because of the age and nature of the school.
“Sajid has been extremely helpful – he represented the school well and put across a good case for us.”
Mr Javid, said he was delighted Waseley Hills High School had been selected as one of the first schools in the country to benefit from the programme.
“This will make a lasting difference to local students for years to come and help level up opportunity and educational success in our area.
“I am extremely pleased for Alan Roll and the staff at Waseley Hills High School, who I know have worked extremely hard to make this application a success.
“It was my pleasure to support them in Westminster and help get this funding over the line.”
The original school buildings on the site date back to 1934 and the school was then redesignated after a review in 1958.
The last investment at the school came in 2002 but it battled with flooding in 2018 which caused substantial damage.
Waseley currently has a capacity of 950 pupils when full – 890 across years seven to 11 and 60 sixth-form places.
As well as improving the selected schools, the programme will also create vital jobs and apprenticeships in the construction industry, with suppliers offering training opportunities as part of their work on the rebuilds.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “The rebuilding projects are just the start of our major ten-year programme, transforming hundreds of schools and improving the education of tens of thousands of children.
“I am determined to get all children back into education as soon as possible, and will make sure we do not let the pandemic stand in the way of giving every young person the opportunity to succeed, progress and fulfil their potential.”