Cambridgeshire County Council reveals proposal to merge two March schools
Here is the Cambridgeshire County Council press release relating to the proposal for the merger of two March schools.
A consultation is being launched today (January 26) into the creation of a new all-through primary school for March.
The new primary school would replace the existing Maple Grove Infant School and Westwood Junior School and if approved, would open on September 1 this year.
All existing children on the Junior and Infant School roll (with the exception of children leaving at the end of Year 6) would simply transfer onto the roll of the new primary school - likely to e called Westwood Primary School.
The new school would continue to provide 90 places per year group from Reception to year 6. From September 2016 onwards, the school will admit 120 pupils into its Reception Year as the school is expanded to cope with anticipated demand.
Westwood Primary School would be a split site school, operating over the sites currently occupied by Maple Grove Infant and Westwood Junior Schools.
Early Years and Childcare provision for 2-4 year olds will continue on the site of the present Infant School. Proposals for the expansion of the provider’s premises to provide more early years and childcare places will not be affected by this proposal.
The reason for the proposal is that Maple Grove was inspected by OfSTED in Autumn 2014 and judged to be inadequate and requiring special measures. Westwood Junior was inspected at a similar time and judged to be ‘good’ across all areas.
The proposal to close Maple Grove and extend the age range of Westwood Junior is the only option available which meets the county council’s preference for an all-through primary school (4-11 age range).
The posts available at the newly created Westwood Primary School would be ring fenced to the staff at Maple Grove Infant School, who will receive prior consideration when they apply.
Trade Union representatives and staff will be invited to participate in the consultation and will be fully informed throughout the process.
The new primary school will initially cater for 630 pupils when it opens in September, but this is expected to increase to 840 as the school expands to meet demand.
The County Council is required to seek the views of governors, parents and staff before making any decision. The consultation therefore opens today (January 26) and will end on February 27.
Depending on feedback from the consultation, the next stage is for the Children and Young People’s Committee to decide on March 10 whether to publish a statutory notice. There is then a four week period – from March 12 to April 8 – when further representations can be made.
The County Council will then make a final decision on April 16, with the intention of opening the new school on September 1.
Two consultation meetings are being held on February 4 – at Maple Grove Infant School at 3.30pm and at Westwood Junior School at 7.00pm. Anyone connected to the schools or their Communities is welcome to attend and learn more about the proposals.