BREAKING NEWS: Expansion plans For 12 primary schools in West Sussex

West Sussex County Council logo
West Sussex County Council logo

SHELLEY PRIMARY School in Broadbridge Heath could be relocated and expanded to cope with rising pupil numbers due to an increase in birth rate and major new housing developments, say West Sussex County Council (WSCC).

The local authority has launched a major consultation on providing more primary school places across the north of the county and Mid Sussex.

Plans involve expanding 12 schools across the Horsham, Billingshurst, Hassocks, Haywards Heath, East Grinstead and Crawley areas.

They include: Arunside and Heron Way Primaries in Horsham; Hassocks Infants; Windmills Junior (also at Hassocks); St Lawrence CE Primary (Hurstpierpoint); Lindfield Primary (near Haywards Heath); Baldwin’s Hill Primary and Blackwell Primary in East Grinstead; Hilltop Primary and Seymour Primary in Crawley.

Wisborough Green, near Billingshurst, is also an area being looked at.

The proposals would see increased places becoming available from September 2013.

It is also proposed that Shelley Primary School in Broadbridge Heath is relocated and expanded but on a longer time scale to cater for families moving into the new homes being built to the south of the village. The consultation suggests this would be achieved in September 2017.

The plans follow meetings with headteachers and governing bodies of the schools involved and the proposal to expand the Church of England maintained school, St Lawrence CE Primary, in Hurstpierpoint, is backed by the Diocese of Chichester.

Full details of all the proposals and a response form can be found on the County Council website at WSCC The closing date is Monday June 25.

The final decision on any changes will be made by Peter Griffiths, West Sussex Cabinet Member for Education and Schools.

In the consultation booklet, he says: “The area is served by a large number of highly regarded and successful schools in the primary sector. The County Council has been closely monitoring the number of children in these schools to make sure they can meet the demand for places.”

Peter said today (Monday May 28): “I really hope there will be a good response from parents because their views will be very important in deciding if this is an appropriate way forward for their children and their local communities.”

If proposals are confirmed then planning applications would be submitted in the autumn of 2012, and building could commence on some projects by the end of the year.