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Bradford Council launches consultation on special schools
10:00am Tuesday 29th October 2013 in News
A consultation into where more special school places will be located has been started by Bradford Council.
There are three primary special schools and three secondary schools for youngsters with learning difficulties in the district. But by 2017, growing demand will mean 33 extra primary places are needed.
The plan is to use an unused building in Netherfield Avenue as an extension to Chellow Heights Special School to accommodate 30 pupils, using up to £750,000 of Government cash to renovate it.
In the consultation document, the Council said it wants to “develop new specialist provision for primary aged children and young people with a range of special educational needs by increasing the capacity of Chellow Heights Special School”.
Councillor Ralph Berry, executive member responsible for education, said: “The building should be open by September 2014 after its conversion. We have up to three quarters of a million for it and that is a lot cheaper than building a new school.”
The consultation document states that: “In 2013, the population of the special schools has changed. The number of children with moderate learning difficulties has dropped significantly. The nature and complexity of the needs of the current children has increased and the number of children on the autism spectrum with other learning difficulties has increased.”
Chellow Heights is designated for 110 places, but is over capacity by 19. The document outlines that families in Bradford South are waiting for places in a special school. It states that High Park School is over capacity by nine, despite being designated for 80 people.
Oastlers School, which opened in September, has capacity for 80 students with emotional, social and behavioural needs, and the Council believes that by December, there will be 68 pupils registered with more in January.
The consultation period lasts until November 8.