A PROPOSAL to build a new Greenfield Primary School with double the capacity has been put forward – for a second time – by Oldham Council for public feedback.
9Plans to build a new school on Shaw Street, increasing capacity from 210 to 420 boys and girls aged 4-11 and 40 nursery places, were first put before locals earlier this year.
But they were withdrawn and put on hold in June as the council revisited its plans for the provision of primary school places in the area.
Now, a pre-publication consultation period is running from September 5-30 to allow the public to give feedback on a new proposal for the school, which is more than 100 years old.
All are welcome to a drop-in session at the school on Wednesday, September 21 from 4.30pm – 6pm to find out more about the proposal and leave feedback.
Plans include building a new school on the current school playing fields before demolishing the existing school and converting the site into new playing fields.
Instead of admitting 30 children each year, the school would admit 60 pupils in to the reception class in September 2018 and then in subsequent reception classes year on year.
Oldham Council’s consultation documents explains: “Currently, the demand for places in the Saddleworth area, as with other areas in the borough, is increasing.
“Adding an extra 30 places per year group at Greenfield County Primary School would help to ensure that there are sufficient high quality school places in the local area.”
Mike Wood, headteacher at Greenfield Primary School, said: “I’m sure the pupils, parents, staff and governors will be delighted with these proposals.
“Last September we were told by Ofsted we were outstanding in every category.
“We’re a growing school which can only go from strength to strength, with new facilities enriching the curriculum and providing new, exciting opportunities for the children of Greenfield and surrounding areas.”
The plans have been welcomed by Cllr John McCann, ward councillor for Saddleworth South, who has been campaigning development for many years.
He said: “There is a chance to have a new school, with provision for the increased demand for primary schooling and to have sports/play provision of the best quality.
“It is a marvellous opportunity for our children to benefit from a first class education and will enable the wonderful standards set by staff to continue in a building worthy of the 21st century and them.”
However, local resident Mike Rooke raised concerns about the impact on access and increased traffic from parents dropping off their children at the school.
He said surveys conducted by residents indicate the number of cars dropping off children has at least doubled since the school increased its intake from 20 to 30 in the last four years.
They estimate at least a further 90 cars will arrive by 2025 when the school would be functioning at its new full capacity, excluding any staff and visitors.
He concluded: “Most residents support building a new single form entry school but not a two-storey primary school on a small playing field accessed via quiet residential and unadopted highways.”
What do you think about the new school? Send in your views by visiting the drop-in event, write to Education Provision Manager. Access Service, PO Box 40, Level 12, Civic Centre, Oldham, OL1 1XJ or go online: https://oldham-consult.objective.co.uk/portal/
The closing date for comments is Friday 30 September 2016.
All feedback received will be reported to Cabinet and they will decide whether to publish a public notice. Then, any interested party would have a formal representation period of five weeks to comment on the proposals before a final decision by Cabinet in February 2017 as to whether the proposed school expansion goes ahead.