New primary school at Stanton Cross SUE, Wellingborough consultation – Supporting information

Closes 12 Aug 2021

Opened 15 Jul 2021

Overview

North Northamptonshire Council proposes to establish a new mainstream primary school on the new Sustainable Urban Extension (SUE) development at Wellingborough, known as Stanton Cross.

Introduction

North Northamptonshire Council proposes to establish a new mainstream primary school on the new Sustainable Urban Extension (SUE) development at Wellingborough, known as Stanton Cross.  Provision for this school is made in the planning consent and the Section 106 (S106) agreement for the development. This agreement is a legal document which requires that sites suitable for 2 two form of entry primary schools need to be provided in accordance with timescales which are linked to the pace of the development along with other conditions which must be met.

Under the legislation which governs the establishment of new schools, North Northamptonshire Council is required to invite proposals to run the school from qualifying academy providers.  That competitive process will be starting later in the summer of 2021. Prior to commencing the process, however, the Council is consulting on the school proposal generally.

This non statutory consultation will run from 15 July 2021 to 12 August 2021.

Why a new school is required

A Sustainable Urban Extension (SUE) is underway in Wellingborough, to the east of the town. Once complete there will be about 3,650 homes. As part of the infrastructure and Section 106 (S106) proposals for the development, provision for 2, two form entry (2FE) primary schools has been included to serve the local community.  Having regard to the pace of development, and stipulations within the S106, the Council is to deliver the first of those schools by September 2022. A second primary school is provided for within the S106, to be procured in the later stages of the SUE.

It is proposed that the school will be a co-educational mainstream sponsored academy primary school for children aged 4 to 11 years, with a total capacity of 420 pupils (two forms in each year group), once fully open. This size and type of provision is consistent with what the Council would expect for any development of the scale and nature of the Stanton Cross SUE. Its construction will be funded fully through S106 contributions at a cost of about £9.6m.

The primary school has an adjoining children’s centre. The children’s centre will provide an early year’s function for children aged 2 to 5 years, in accordance with planning approval and the S106 agreement. It is expected that the academy trust who are appointed who operate the school, will also operate the children’s centre. The manner in which the children’s centre is operated will fall within the remit of the academy trust. i.e. early years’ function delivered by the academy trust itself, or procured from a third party.

The school is expected to open in a phased manner, allowing it to grow to accommodate new pupils as the housing comes on line. It is proposed the school will initially open with a PAN of 30 in Reception year and then grow organically throughout the years. Due to the current Coronavirus pandemic and the impact of BREXIT, the timeline for the school may change if circumstances dictate.

Location of the proposed school

Masterplan of Stanton Cross, Wellingborough:

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Site boundary of proposed primary school in Stanton Cross:

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Pupil profile – Wellingborough

The SUE is expected to be home to over 1,000 primary age pupils, once complete and the S106 makes provision for two primary schools on the development, to provide sufficiency of school places within the town.

Wellingborough town currently has 14 schools providing education to primary aged pupils. Within the town, there are currently; 8 primary schools, three junior schools, and three infant schools. The schools are as follows:

  • All Saints CEVA Primary School
  • Avenue Infant School
  • Croyland Primary School
  • Freemans Endowed CE Junior Academy
  • Oakway Academy
  • Olympic Primary School
  • Our Lady’s Catholic Primary
  • Park Junior School
  • Redwell Primary
  • Ruskin Infant
  • Ruskin Junior
  • St Barnabas CE Academy
  • Victoria Primary
  • Warwick Academy

Available primary school places within the town stands at 438 places as of February 2021. It is expected that some of the surplus capacity will be utilised by the children and families moving into the first phase of completed houses within development, prior to the new school opening. The surplus capacity figure noted, includes all year groups.

Consultation

The planning consent and associated S106 for the SUE stipulates a site for the school large enough for a two form entry primary school, children’s centre with a sports pitch. The Council is of the view that provision in accordance with the planning assumptions is the appropriate way to ensure that there are sufficient primary school places for children who reside within the Stanton Cross development at Wellingborough as the SUE progresses. The proposal comes forward in the context of the SUE which has been carefully considered by the local planning authority and has been the subject of a public planning process.

The Council is consulting generally at this stage to invite any comments which might inform the process for delivering the school within the criteria already established in the planning process.

If you have any comments to make regarding any aspect of the proposed school, please feed them back through this consultation.

The formal statutory consultation, which sponsors are required to undertake under section 10 of the Academies Act 2010, takes place during the pre-opening phase of the school i.e. after the sponsor has been selected. This is not part of this process.

This school will be deemed a free school under the Free School Presumption process. Guidance on this can be found at Establishing a new school: free school presumption on the GOV.UK website.

An Equality Screening Assessment (PDF 346KB) has been completed to evidence what impact the proposal may have on equality groups.

The consultation will run from Thursday 15 July to midnight on Thursday 12 August 2021.

For information about how consultation and engagement responses are managed, please see the consultation and engagement privacy notice.

Have your say

If you have any comments to make regarding any aspect of the proposed school, please send them to Rebecca.Knight@northnorthants.gov.uk.

Please note: The formal statutory consultation, which sponsors are required to undertake under section 10 of the Academies Act 2010, takes place during the pre-opening phase of the school i.e. after the sponsor has been selected. This is not part of this non-statutory consultation.

Interests

  • Consultations
  • Schools and education