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Council reveals community benefits of school improvement work

The Vale of Glamorgan Council has set out how its Sustainable Communities for Learning programme has benefitted the local areas where school upgrading work has taken place.


  • Friday, 02 December 2022

    Vale of Glamorgan

Beach clean event in PenarthThis body of work is a long-term commitment, delivered in partnership with Welsh Government, to invest £149 million into top-class facilities and ultra-modern learning environments.


So far, more than a dozen primary and secondary schools have either been built or extensively refurbished under the scheme.


But the scope of this work extends beyond improving schools solely for the pupils and staff that work there.


The aim is also to enhance the wider community.

Cllr Rhiannon Birch, Vale of Glamorgan Council Cabinet Member for Education, Arts and the Welsh Language, said: “Since 2019 our school improvement programme has seen educational facilities transformed across the County.


“Pupils are now learning in the state-of-the-art conditions, giving them the best chance of success.


“However, schools do not sit in isolation, they are part of a wider local area and it is important that this work also benefits that community.


“That is achieved not just through the facilities our schools offer the public, but also the positive impact the contractors developing them have made.


“Jobs have been created and career paths forged as part of these projects, along with a host of other benefits.


”In the summer, the Council worked with the Joe Ledley Football Academy to offer children attending soccer sessions at Whitmore High School free healthy meals and a range of other benefits.



And a couple of months ago representatives from contractors ISG and AECOM joined Council staff and local pupils for a beach clean event in Penarth.


That is just one example of how developers have given back to the locality.


Others include:


  • Creating 158 new full-time jobs
  • Supporting 104 apprenticeships and 32 work experience placements
  • Around 99 per cent of construction waste has avoided landfill
  • Developers have averaged an 82 per cent construction spend in Wales
  • 85 percent of subcontractors have come from Wales
  • Approximately 50 per cent of the workforce has come from the local postcode
  • 39 community initiatives have been completed under and a further 13 are planned
  • All new schools are energy efficient and environmentally friendly
  • From January this year, all new schools have produced net zero carbon