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Spring start on major remodelling of Spalding's Garth School




A major remodelling of The Garth School in Spalding is expected to start this spring.

Five new classrooms - significantly larger than the existing ones - are at the heart of the project, along with new therapeutic and specialist spaces.

Similar ambitious works are planned for Spalding's second special school, The Priory, in 2021.

Executive head teacher Daran Bland, head teacher Claire Ball and pupils on the site of new build at Garth School. Photo (TIM WILSON): 230119-6
Executive head teacher Daran Bland, head teacher Claire Ball and pupils on the site of new build at Garth School. Photo (TIM WILSON): 230119-6

Daran Bland, executive head teacher for The Spalding Special Schools Federation, said: "Upon completion of the building works, the two schools will amalgamate to form one school, operating over the two existing sites.

"These developments and improvements will enable the school to meet 'all needs' for pupils aged between two and 19.

"This is a truly exciting time for specialist provision across Lincolnshire and a rare opportunity to take advantage of a significant capital funding offer from the local authority."

The Garth School, Ofsted outstanding overall and in all six categories measured, caters for around 56 pupils aged from two to 19.

The remodelling will be the first major work since The Garth was founded almost 50 years ago.

"I think everybody's very excited," said Mr Bland. "Modern, airy, larger and well equipped classrooms is something that we are all looking forward to."

Classrooms will also have "break out/calming spaces" for pupils who are having a difficult day or are in crisis.

Executive head teacher Daran Bland with the plan that will transform The Garth School. (230119-4)
Executive head teacher Daran Bland with the plan that will transform The Garth School. (230119-4)

Mr Bland said: "Build plans also include the addition of several new toilet and hygiene suite areas and the conversion of some existing classroom spaces into a 'parent room', a physiotherapy space and visiting professionals' base.

"Outdoor play areas will be re-locatedto accommodate the extension and a new internal courtyard will form a feature of the expanded building to act as an external sensory space.

"The Priory School plans are not quite so advanced yet as this will form Phase 2 of the project.

"Initial designs include several new classroom spaces to replace some existing rooms that will be demolished as they are not ideal teaching and learning spaces.

"Remodelling of the existing building is also planned to ensure the very best use is made of the space.

"The expanded Priory site would allow for us to include some primary phased provision on site."

County special schools are in line for major improvements after a partnership including the county council, Lincolnshire Parent Carer Forum and heads of special schools helped secure £50 million in funding.

Mr Bland said: "The Garth School was successful in a Condition Improvement Fund bid of just over £900,000 and this funding is contributing towards the local authority's funding commitment."


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