A BRAND new Greenfield Primary School has been given the green light by Oldham Council in a move to double its capacity.
Proposals approved by Cabinet outline the construction of a new two form-entry primary school building on Shaw Street which will increase pupil intake from 30 to 60 per year.
The existing Greenfield Primary School will be demolished and the new school will be built on the school playing fields – converting the existing school site into playing fields.
It is proposed that a planning application will be made for these works in early 2016, with a target of having the new building completed for September 2017.
Mike Wood, headteacher at Greenfield Primary School, said: “This is fantastic news and I’m sure the pupils, parents, staff and governors will be delighted with these proposals.
“Last September we were told by Ofsted that 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.”
In building the bigger school, Oldham Council is responding to an unprecedented rise in the number of children needing primary school places.
A budget provision of £13.5m was made available in March 2014 to deliver a new three form-entry primary school in Rochdale Road, along with the expansion of primary school places in Failsworth, Hollinwood, Saddleworth and Lees.
Work has already taken place on the expansion of three Chadderton primaries – Mills Hill, Yew Tree and Bare Trees – which now provide a combined total of 80 new places.
Research has found there will be a demand for an extra 140 places in the reception year in the borough by 2017/18 which will need to be accommodated.
Councillor Shoab Akhtar, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: “With Oldham’s population rising the Council has been working hard for a long time, in partnership with schools, to ensure there are sufficient places for all our children.
“I’m sure this will be great news for parents and staff at Greenfield Primary School and it will go a long way in the future towards enabling pupils to attend the school of their choice.
“This move was the preferred option for staff and school governors as it will not only increase places but remove potential future issues around building maintenance costs, energy efficiency and risk to the quality of education as the current old stone built school has parts dating back pre-1900.”