Exciting plans to double the size of Gainsborough primary school

A Gainsborough primary school could double in size after plans were submitted to add seven new classrooms.

Castle Wood Primary Academy currently has 180 students this academic year, but has been asked by Lincolnshire County Council to increase its numbers to 360 by September 2021 to meet high demand in the town.

The school, on The Avenue, would go from one class per year to two alongside the changes because of an increase in a younger generation and a shortage of primary school places.

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Gary Brown, Head of School, said: “It’s an opportunity to give more kids the good teaching we can offer. We are very excited.”

The extension would also mean that the school, which was only built in 2015, could potentially increase its capacity to over 400 pupils in the future.

The county council said the extension would help meet demand in the town and support future housing development plans.

Matt Clayton, admissions and education provision manager at the county council, said: “Castle Wood Academy accepted a bulge class of 47 when it originally opened in 2015 to help meet demand for school places, even though its Published Admissions Number (PAN) is 30.

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“For this September’s intake the academy took more than their standard intake but there is no further flexibility to take more than 30 pupils for the September 2019 intake and beyond.

“There are five schools within this planning area of Gainsborough, but these are all also very full.

“Castle Wood is considered to be the most suitable option for expansion due its location.”

Alongside the seven new classrooms, which will be attached to the existing building, there will be increased parking provision, new group rooms and a studio hall which Mr Brown says the school is planning to turn into a library, something which it does not currently have.

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The school is part of the Tall Oaks Academy Trust which also runs White’s Wood Academy and Mercer’s Wood Academy in Gainsborough.

Mr Brown also said he has plans to engage with students alongside the development.

He said: “It’s also an opportunity to incorporate the build into learning. We are developing lots of sides to our curriculum and how we can support science and technology - which the build can incorporate.

“We might get the contractors in to speak to students or get them involved by making blogs about the build.”

A consultation is currently underway on the plans sent to West Lindsey District Council last week.

Mr Brown said the work is estimated to take a year and would likely start next year.