Consultation begins on proposed £44m investment into Barry secondary schools
05 September 2016
The Vale of Glamorgan Council has begun a public consultation on a proposal that could see £44m invested into two new mixed-sex secondary schools for Barry.
If there is support from parents and pupils then the new schools, which will replace the existing single sex Barry Comprehensive and Bryn Hafren Comprehensive schools, would open in September 2018.
The proposals were developed in partnership with an advisory board that included the head teachers and chairs of governors of both existing schools, representatives of feeder primary schools, further and higher education, and senior members of the Council’s Learning and Skills team. Central to their work was the consideration of the views of parents, pupils and staff gathered in a previous consultation exercise undertaken in 2015.
Cllr Lis Burnett, Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Education, said: “We know that many parents and pupils in Barry have wanted to see a move away from same-sex schooling for some time. The Council’s new plan for transforming English medium education in Barry will not only deliver this but it will also deliver on our longstanding commitment to invest in the futures of the children and young people of the Vale of Glamorgan.
“The success of the Penarth Learning Community shows the impact that first class facilities can have not only on achievement but also the wellbeing of pupils. Construction is now well underway on the Llantwit Learning Community and if these proposals are supported by parents and pupils during the consultation then work will begin on delivering facilities of just as high a standard for Barry.”
£11.5m has been earmarked for new facilities and investment into the buildings on the current Bryn Hafren School site and £32.5m for a new school building and a Centre of Behavioural Excellence on the Barry Comprehensive School site.
Both new schools would have a capacity of 1100 places. As the existing schools share the same catchment area, the creation of two new mixed sex schools would also see new catchment areas established.
The consultation will be open to all interested parties, with a focus on parents, pupils, and staff, and will run for six weeks. Parents of both existing schools and all feeder schools will receive a consultation pack outlining the proposals and a response form. Responses can be submitted online at www.valeofglamorgan.gov.uk/barryschools, in writing, by calling the Council’s C1V contact centre, or at one of the drop-in sessions being held at the schools.
This exercise follows the recent public consultation on a proposal to invest £19m into Ysgol Gymraeg Bro Morgannwg. Although both schemes were drawn up by the same advisory board, the two are not interlinked and can progress separately.