School to expand number of pupils it can house from September
- Credit: Archant
A school in Nailsea will expand its range of pupil places for the next academic year.
North Somerset Council's executive unanimously approved the expansion of Ravenswood School from a range of 112 to 119 places to 134 to 140 places.
The expansion will help to meet the increasing demand for pupil places for those with moderate learning difficulties.
Extra pupils will be admitted to the site from September onwards.
The range of places aligns with the capacity of the site and resources required to meet different needs.
Admissions will be made depending on the needs of new and existing pupils and the use of the site to meet their educational, health and care requirements
Cllr Catherin Gibbons, executive member for children’s services and lifelong learning, said: "We have an increasing demand for places of pupils with special educational needs in North Somerset.
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"As an authority we have a vision where we want to give that extra help and support to overcome any problems these children have that others don't face.
"It is an obligation that we allow our children to reach their full potential and in North Somerset work together to support all children and young people with additional needs.
"This is a school that does fantastic work with children."
First phase consultation took place in December and showed overwhelming support for the changes, with 89 per cent of respondents in support of the proposed expansion, although there was some concern raised about the need to have appropriate facilities and staff and to avoid duplication with other local providers such as Weston College.
A grant of £28,000 was made available to Ravenswood to enable small site upgrades to parts of the adjacent and now-vacant Voyage Learning Campus site which was funded by a contribution from the specialist provision earmarked reserve.
The school is currently using parts of the site on a short-term lease basis.
Expansion is expected to cost in the region of £50-100,000 and the funding for this will be approved separately as part of an amendment to the capital programme.
Ravenswood School supports pupils aged three to 19 from across North Somerset with autistic spectrum disorder, speech, language and communication, moderate learning difficulties, severe learning difficulties, visual impairment needs and social, emotional and mental health.