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New Havering special school approved

Published: Thursday, 18 April 2019

Cabinet approves new special educational needs school for Havering

Plans to build a new £8.5 million free school for children with special educational needs (SEN) were approved at the Council’s cabinet meeting last night.

A new free school is being planned on the St Edward’s Church of England Academy site in London Road, Romford, and will cater for 60 children aged three to 16 years.

The purpose-built school will be run by the Samuel Ward Academy Trust, now known as Unity Schools Partnership Trust, which currently runs St Edward’s and will support children who have a statement or education health care plan.

Councillor Robert Benham, Havering’s cabinet member for Education, Children and Families, said:

“This is welcome news as it means that we will be able to meet the needs of up to 60 local young people who have specialist needs. Many children who are currently schooled outside of the borough will be able to remain a part of the community where they live and have grown up.

“Our most recent records show that Havering is supporting 1,534 children with the number of children with special educational needs growing faster than forecasted.

“A new school will take the pressure off the existing three special educational needs schools which are full to capacity and significantly reduce the cost of sending pupils to schools outside of the borough, while ensuring children receive the specialist help they need.”

The new school will also create additional jobs in the borough with the recruitment of specialist teaching and support staff.

In order for the new school to be built, the existing music block at the front of the school would be demolished and relocated elsewhere on the site at a cost of £800,000 to the Council.

Funding for the new SEN school will come from the Government’s Education Skills and Funding Agency.

The new school will be opened in 2022.