School Expansion Project Update September 2016

SCHOOL EXPANSION UPDATE, September 2016

The work so far

While families and staff were enjoying a glorious summer break, the school expansion project team were working very hard at St. Agnes Academy. Over the summer they:

  • Finished kitting out the two rather swanky mobile classrooms;
  • Re-instated the KS2 playground;
  • Erected a cycle and scooter store and bin storage;
  • Created a haul road to provide access for construction traffic to the site of the new building;
  • Erected safety fencing and gates to keep pupils, families, staff and visitors securely away from construction activities;
  • Removed the works compound in the car park and erected another on the site of the new building;
  • Provided an additional Early Years outdoor play area in the KS1 playground;
  • Began excavation of the foundations of the new building;
  • Demolished part of the school hall and began extending it.

Since we’ve been back at school the foundations have been laid for the new building and the steel frame has just begun to be erected. We’re enjoying witnessing the building coming ‘out of the ground’.

For pictures of the work to date, see the September Kier Residents Newsletter below.

Safety during the project

We were delighted to welcome 51 new Reception children on 7th September, and we have been working very hard to make sure that they, along with the 219 other pupils we now have on roll, are safe and happy coming to and being at school.

Supported by parish councillors, we started our Walking Bus at the beginning of the school year and were visited by Sustrans’ mascot, Billy the Boots, during the official launch on 12th September.  The Walking Bus is proving very popular, with up to 20 children walking to school each morning under the supervision of our staff ‘driver’ and ‘conductor’. We are delighted that several parents and carers have volunteered to provide additional supervision along the route on a regular basis.

Two areas of overgrown shrubbery in what was the staff car park were removed when services were laid on to the two mobile classrooms. At the same time, the area in front of the school has been fitted with fencing and gating and the constructors, Kier, have provided a security station which is manned virtually continuously. These developments have provided us with a large secure area for families to meet in to deliver their children to and collect their children from school.

Some parents have asked why some fire exits in school have been blocked off. This was always in the expansion plan and is designed to ensure that children aren’t able to leave the school building and enter the building site. In place since the beginning of the school year is an alternative fire escape plan, which has been approved during a recent visit by the County Fire Officer.

So far, Kier has been able to keep the impact of construction traffic on the smooth running of the school to a minimum. Instructions to contractors place an embargo on deliveries for the project during the busiest times in the school day. This has largely been successful, and on the one occasion when the embargo was ignored Kier terminated the contract with the contractor who broke these rules regarding delivery times. This shows how seriously we and Kier take the issue of safety.

The pedestrian crossing outside school continues to be of concern to the school and our families. The design of this crossing is completely out of the hands of the school and, while we have made many representations, we are still uncertain what the Council will offer as a solution. We hope that together with families and the local community we will be able to press hard for a suitable crossing and will keep you informed.

We’re in the process of updating the ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ section on the School Expansion Project page of the school website: www.st-agnes.cornwall.sch.uk.  Your comments and questions are always welcome through the dedicated email box for this purpose: schoolexpansion@st-agnes.cornwall.sch.uk.

T. 01872 552648 E. secretary@st-agnes.cornwall.sch.uk