£10m funding confirmed for St Andrew’s Primary School

NEWPORT City Council’s leader has announced a £10 million project to replace St Andrew’s key stage two building.

The primary school building was closed in the spring of 2021 after significant structural issues were found.

Pupils and staff were moved out and all are currently based at Newport Live’s Connect Centre.

After the significant structural issues were identified, options for the key stage two setting were investigated, including the potential to repair the old building. This was not considered a viable and long-term solution considering the complex foundation defects as well as other problems.

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A new build will enable the whole school to remain together on the site and create an excellent new learning environment for the children.

It is anticipated that the present key stage two building will be demolished ahead of building a replacement. Clearance works would then be planned for this summer to minimise disruption.

Councillor Jane Mudd told cabinet that Welsh Government has now approved a request to change the scope of its Band B schools improvement programme.

“A new £10 million project will be added to the programme to support the replacement of the key stage two building.

“This is great news and our officers will work with colleagues in Newport Norse to develop designs for a permanent solution on the site.

“It is expected that staff and pupils will be able to return from September 2023 and whole school can be reunited on one site. I would like to thank the staff, led by head teacher Jo Giles, governors and pupils for the resilient way they have dealt with this unavoidable situation.

“I must also thank Newport Live as their offer of the Connect Centre to be used as a temporary school meant the key stage two pupils were able to remain together.

“A fantastic team effort has enabled the children to continue their education in a good learning environment.”

Head teacher Jo Giles said:

“While we continue to hold fond memories of the history of our previous St. Andrew’s junior building, we are incredibly excited to hear this news!

“It will be a privilege to work alongside Newport City Council to plan and build a new junior school fit for the realisation of Curriculum for Wales; a building our pupils and community not only deserve but in which they can thrive and learn together as we continue to reach for the stars!”

Chair of governors and the council’s deputy leader, Councillor Roger Jeavons, added:

“I’m sure this wonderful news will be welcomed by the whole school community.

“I’m saddened that we have to lose the old building that has served local people for more than 100 years but understand that this is unavoidable. However, St Andrew’s Primary School is about much more than the structures and its wonderful spirit and sense of community will live on in the new building.”

 

Gwynoro Jones

Former MP for Carmarthenshire, Gwynoro Jones joined the team covering politics in Wales. He has a wealth of experience in politics and has been a regular commentator on radio, TV and in newspapers in Wales. Email: gwynorojones@walesnewsonline.com
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