By Nick Gill
Friday, May 25, 2012
A SCHOOL in Letchworth GC has been selected to undergo major rebuilding work following a government announcement yesterday (Thursday).
The Highfield School was put forward by Hertfordshire County Council for the government’s £2bn Priority School Building Programme and was one of seven schools in the county to be successful.
Although education secretary Michael Gove confirmed that the school has been prioritised as part of the programme, it is not yet known if it will undergo the full rebuild process or be partially rebuilt.
“I’m absolutely delighted about the wonderful facilities that will now be on offer to current and future students and staff,” said Highfield headteacher Ian Morris.
He added that although it may not be noticeable, the secondary school has not undergone major refurbishment since it was built in the 1960s.
North East Herts MP Oliver Heald added: “This is very good news for the school which has been doing well lately. I am delighted to see some investment coming into Letchworth. It is a very big investment, one of only a few in Hertfordshire.”
Frances Button, cabinet member for education and skills, said: “I am delighted that several of Hertfordshire’s school buildings most in need of investment have secured the funds they need to improve their facilities. I am especially pleased that all our schools that submitted applications have been successful, as we know this is not the case everywhere in the country.
“This is great news for the thousands of students who attend these schools and all the teaching staff, who will soon enjoy greatly improved buildings. And of course the county council’s own large programme of maintenance work to schools will continue to help those schools which are not part of this programme.”
Of the 587 schools that applied nationally, 261 have secured funding. Work on the most urgent will begin straight away with the project expected to be completed in five years.
Mr Gove made the announcement in a written ministerial statement in the House of Commons yesterday.
He said: “Last year I invited bids to a new programme from schools in need of urgent repair. Five-hundred-and-eighty-seven schools applied for the programme on the basis of their condition need. Today I can confirm that 261 schools will be rebuilt, or have their condition needs met through the Priority School Building Programme.
“Officials have today written to all schools who applied for the programme to confirm whether their application has been successful. Work will begin immediately and the first schools will be open in 2014.”