Six figure school investment programme continues to take shape
08 Sep 2023
Northumberland County Council’s school’s investment and improvement programme continues to take shape.
Multi-million-pound investments across the county are part of the council’s largest ever capital programme; with over £100m channelled into transforming education and learning facilities for young people now and for generations to come.
Students are already enjoying new and improved facilities at Haydon Bridge High School, Ponteland High School, Hexham’s Queen Elizabeth High School and Emily Wilding Davison School in Ponteland.
Projects are now underway to refurbish and rebuild schools in the Coquet, Seaton Valley and Berwick partnerships of schools, which will include state-of-the art new high schools as well as investment in primary schools, specialist, post-16 skills and post-18 provision.
Funding is also being channeled into remodeling and refurbishment projects across the county – from new modular buildings to general school improvements.
And with schools nationally affected by the issue of RAAC concrete being used in some older builds, the county’s maintained schools have been given a clean bill of health.
Ofsted inspection outcomes for the county are also at a record high with 93.8% rated good or better compared to a national average of 88%.
Councillor Guy Renner-Thompson, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Inspiring Young People, said: “This is a really exciting time for education in Northumberland.
“Not only are Ofsted ratings at a record high and well above the national average - our ambitious school capital investment programme continues to take shape.
“We’ve completed projects in Haydon Bridge, Ponteland and Hexham – now we’re moving on to Amble, Seaton Valley and Berwick and also lots of other investment and improvement programmes are taking place too around the county.
“We want our schools to be fit for the future and the new high schools will use innovative technologies to create net zero carbon in operation schools.
“The council also spends on average over £2m per year addressing maintenance issues across our maintained school estate.
“We would like to reassure families that our investigations have found no evidence of the presence of RAAC in our maintained schools in Northumberland.
“Academies are liaising directly with the Department for Education, but we have not been made aware of any instances of RAAC being present in their buildings at this time.
“Our education provision in Northumberland is fantastic – we have brilliant teachers and support staff, a great curriculum offer and fabulous early years provision, but it is still important that this is supported by continued investment and improvements so that all young people can thrive and reach their full potential.”
We’ve been using padlets to keep everyone up to date on the different projects and you can find them all here: