Red ribbon is cut to mark Hitchin primary school’s smart new block

Matthew and Alex Reed, with, Michael Taylor, (school governor), Joshua and William Hankin, and Tracy

Matthew and Alex Reed, with, Michael Taylor, (school governor), Joshua and William Hankin, and Tracy Thomas, Headteacher - Credit: Archant

Many heads made light work of the important business of officially declaring a Hitchin primary school’s smart new classroom block open on Tuesday.

Tracy Thomas, (current headteacher), Edith Lucas, (former headteacher) and Sarah Anderson, (former h

Tracy Thomas, (current headteacher), Edith Lucas, (former headteacher) and Sarah Anderson, (former headteacher) - Credit: Archant

Samuel Lucas JMI head Tracy Thomas was on hand at the Gaping Lane school but so were two of her predecessors, Edith Lucas and Sarah Anderson.

Samuel Lucas grand opening

Samuel Lucas grand opening - Credit: Archant

Mrs Lucas was on the staff when the school first opened its doors 40 years ago, and for most of the time since extra space has been needed.

Samuel Lucas grand opening

Samuel Lucas grand opening - Credit: Archant

Now the school has expanded to a two-class entry, with 30 more children joining in reception each year, and has a two-storey £3.5 million block, a roof terrace and a new hall to ease the pressure.

Samuel Lucas grand opening

Samuel Lucas grand opening - Credit: Archant

Governor Michael Taylor, who has also been part of the school set-up since it opened, did the honours, with the help of two sets of twins – Matthew and Alex Reed, and Joshua and William Hankin, telling the assembled pupils that it was a day they should remember for the rest of their lives.

The project has been financed by Herts County Council as part of a programme of expanding primary schools to cope with a surge of pupils.

Councillor David Williams, County Hall’s cabinet member for education, said: “I’m delighted to see the expansion of Samuel Lucas School to help meet the growing demand for school places and wish pupils, staff and parents well as they begin this exciting new phase in the school’s history.

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“We want all children to have access to a good education so they can reach their full potential, with the right number of school places in the right location. This is a significant challenge given there are 10,000 more children under the age of four in Hertfordshire today than a decade ago.

“However, we are committed to ensuring that where the county’s population grows we build the appropriate infrastructure and have spent £170m in the last four years to provide more than 3,000 additional reception places, including 195 permanent places for September 2015.”

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