State-of-the-art school for Nailsea

NAILSEA S new £30million school will include a cinema screen, lecture theatres, an internet cafe, and a 300-seater auditorium, which can be turned into a performance stage.

NAILSEA'S new £30million school will include a cinema screen, lecture theatres, an internet cafe, and a 300-seater auditorium, which can be turned into a performance stage.

The state-of-the-art school, which is due to be completed in December 2009, has been designed to look like a university campus with lots of open areas for youngsters to use as they wish.

The new building is being constructed near the existing school to minimise disruption, and is being funded by the Department for Children, Schools and Families as part of the Government's Building Schools for the Future programme.

Students, staff and members of the community were all consulted on the design and the artist's impression of the school has now been released by developers Carillion Construction.

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It is hoped that the site will also contain a Weston College block, offering people vocational courses such as hair and beauty, construction and ICT subjects.

Jeremy Blatchford, North Somerset Council's executive member for Children and Young People's Services, said: "It's not just a new site, but a new way of teaching with classrooms, lecture theatres, break out areas and modern sports facilities.

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"This is a flagship school and it is hopefully the first of ten to be built in the area."

Staff and pupils at the school are delighted with the plans. Headteacher David New said: "I can't wait for the stage of turning the two dimensional drawings into a three dimensional building which we can get in and start teaching. We want the best in Nailsea for out students because they deserve it."

He added that the school's facilities would be opened up to rest of the community to promote learning at all ages.

The building will have a rain water harvester and solar panels. It also has super labs to enable 60 pupils at a time to take part in science experiments.

Member of the school council, Matt Caine, aged 14, who helped to voice pupils' opinions to developers, said: "We are really pleased with the design. It looks great for what we want and need to get the most out of the school.

"We are excited that we'll still be able to use the facilities here when we leave."

The school will be able to take 1,530 students and a planning application is due to be submitted to North Somerset Council in February.

Work will start in the summer and the old school will be knocked down in after December 2009, when the new building is finished.

Members of the public can find out about the new school at an open day on Monday from 3-7.30pm.

What do you think about the new school? Write to the Times, 32 Waterloo Street, Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, BS23 1LW.


• The central hub of the two-storey building will house a learning centre, library and reception and a dining area as well as the sixth form on the first floor.

• Staff will be based around the school rather than in one block, to increase supervision of students and to make teachers more accessible.

• Pupils and members of the community can take advantage of a hockey pitch, two multi-use games areas, rugby, football and cricket pitches, a basketball court and a 400-metre grass running track.

• The two lecture theatres will have removable seating so the rooms can double up as gymnasiums and dance and drama studios.

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