School’s new site shaping up well
5:30am Thursday 8th May 2014 in By Beren Cross, @BerenCross
TIMBERS will be in place at the temporary home of Tadpole Farm Primary Academy, in Redhouse, by the end of this week and headteacher Jane Leo is buoyed by the progress being made.
The building, which will be known as Redhouse Community Centre, has begun to take shape, just four weeks after contractors Willmott Dixon arrived on site.
Jane, who currently has 27 pupils due to start reception at the academy in September and a further 12 children lined up for the nursery, said the progress was necessary to reassure parents.
“I spoke with the site manager and it’s looking as though they are slightly ahead of schedule. Timbers are going in this week, and after just one month on site I would say that’s amazing,” she said.
“Willmott Dixon is doing an incredible job. It will be up and ready in time and it looks a really exciting place to be.
“It is tailored to being a school for the short term and will be handed back to the community as a community building in the future.
“We currently have a list of 27 ready to start in September, but I have had e-mails from several other parents who aren’t quite where they need to be.
“If we can get to 40 by the time we open, I will be well chuffed. It’s tough because you are asking people to buy into something that isn’t there yet.”
The academy will be able to accommodate 60 reception and 52 nursery children at full capacity from September.
Jane said they are after more parents to come forward and enrol their children with the nursery.
“If we can get to half of the 52 we can accommodate in the nursery that would give us a full morning session, with the afternoon session free,” she said.
The centre is being built in Frankel Avenue, a stone’s throw from Isambard Community School, and is being funded by Swindon Council with Section 106 money.
The initial designs for the centre were created to cater for a 20-place playgroup, which will be used as the nursery space for the academy when it moves in.
The other section of the centre will form one large room, which will house the two reception classes planned for September.
It is likely the centre will remain the academy’s home until Easter 2015, when the permanent home at Tadpole Farm is finished.
Willmott Dixon, the contractor due to create the permanent building too, is due on site in June when Crest Nicholson finish installing services at the site. A logo for the new school and colour for the uniform will be decided at a meeting of parents already signed up to the school next Friday.
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