New school soon on Bourne homes estate

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A NEW primary school for 210 children in Bourne should open its doors in September 2014.

Lincolnshire County Council has set the ball rolling to find an operator to run the new academy, which will be built on the growing Elsea Park development using section 106 money provided by the developers to benefit the town.

The new school has become necessary after an explosion in the number of children requiring a primary school place due to a higher birth rate and the number of families moving into new homes in Elsea Park.

There are expected to be about 320 primary age children living in the development’s 1,600 houses by the time it is finished.

The proposal to build a new school was supported by members of the county council’s Children and Young People Scrutiny Committee after being presented with a report on behalf of the executive director of Children’s Services.

Assistant director Meredith Teasdale said: “Once agreed with the executive councillor, this will allow the process to find a provider to begin.

“An announcement on this, detailing the site, timescales and process for interested parties to follow is expected in October.”

The opening of the new school is likely to be phased, with just an initial intake of reception children to protect the viability of neighbouring schools.

The report to members highlighted a shortage of school places for the academic year which started earlier this month, where there was a shortfall of 27 places at Bourne primary schools.

This resulted in those 27 children being offered places up to four and half miles away, at schools in Baston, Edenham, Morton and Thurlby, against parents’ preferences.

Three of those schools took on more pupils than their planned admission numbers.

The report that went before councillors said: “It clearly indicates the pressure on places in the Bourne area and the overcrowding of schools to accommodate local children.

Those who have been forced to attend schools more than two miles away from home also receive free transport, which is paid for by Lincolnshire County Council.