Six States schools are to be extended and improved to ensure Jersey has enough primary places as pupil numbers rise. Fourteen new classes are being added to States primary schools to cater for extra children who will come into the education system over the next few years.
Seven of the classes will be built at d’Auvergne School to meet demand from families living in the town area. Extensions will also be added to Plat Douet, Springfield, Trinity and Bel Royal schools to increase capacity. As part of the project, an extra class has been opened at Mont Nicolle school this term and it will also have larger play and parking areas.
ESC Minister Deputy Patrick Ryan said: “This is excellent news. Our predictions show that pupil numbers are rising and we will need at least 14 extra classes by 2016. Prudent planning by ESC and the support of the Treasury mean we can meet the demand in time and ensure all our pupils have sufficient space and good facilities.”
As part of the Medium Term Financial Plan the States set aside £15 million to provide the required places. A team from Education, Sport and Culture and Jersey Property Holdings looked at a range of options for creating the extra capacity.
Deputy Ryan added: “Initially we looked at building a new town primary but two factors led us to choose the current solution; first, the lack of suitable States-owned sites in the town area and, secondly, the need for flexibility. This scheme is not only more cost-effective, it is the most efficient and practical solution.
“Building at d’Auvergne School and the other sites enables us to provide the classes at the right time and in the right parts of the Island, where demand is highest. In addition, the schools concerned will benefit from improved facilities and the overall cost of providing the space we need is reduced.”
The total cost of this primary school project will be £10.322 million. The timetable for completion of the projects is:
• September 2014
Mont Nicolle School: New class already opened in September 2013 to meet demand in the west. The school will also get extended hard play space outside and improved parking.
• September 2015
Springfield School: A new block at the back of the plot will allow one extra class and improvements to the hall, other internal areas and the outside play space.
Bel Royal School: This is the school for children who have physical disabilities and the project includes significant improvements to improve access and mobility within the school. Two new classrooms will be built plus physiotherapy space, toilets and new resource areas.
• September 2016
d’Auvergne School: Seven extra classes to be built at the back of the existing building. This will be relatively low impact and not visible from the main road. Through links with sport, we intend to include an all-weather play surface, which will also benefit the community. Classes will be filled up gradually over seven years. This means the school will benefit from extra space in the meantime.
Plat Douet School: Two new classrooms will be built and outside areas will be improved, especially around the reception class area.
Trinity School: One of our smallest primary schools. Temporary structures will be removed. A new block will provide an extra classroom and allow for internal improvements to the library, hall and IT suite.
The pupil number predictions are based on a mix of known birth records, typical enrolment trends and input from the Statistics Unit from the 2011 Census.