Following an upturn in the numbers of primary school aged children in the Harehills area of the city in the last 12 months, Leeds City Council has recently unveiled additional school places in the area.
The places, provided by Shakespeare primary school as part of a previously agreed expansion, are to be brought online sooner than originally expected using Bridge Community Church as temporary accommodation. This will leave the church with a legacy of useable building space as part of an agreed refurbishment.
The expansion of the school from 315 pupils on a role to 630 had been planned to occur gradually from September 2018 but will now be a more accelerated programme to allow the children access to education in line with required timescales in the spring term.
Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Executive member for children and families said:
“Our ambition is for Leeds to be the best city for children to live and grow up in with good learning places. We have moved quickly to meet the need to provide additional primary school places in Harehills as a result of movement of families into the area.
“I’d personally like to thank the leadership of Shakespeare primary and the pastor at Bridge Community Church for working so pragmatically and positively in partnership with us to provide a swift and beneficial outcome. Enabling children to access education in this way really shows what we can achieve as a city when we work together and focus on outcomes.”
Julian Gorton, Head Teacher of Shakespeare Primary School said:
“We are looking forward to welcoming the children to our temporary site at Bridge Community Church. All the classrooms are set up and we have an experienced team of teachers and support staff ready to take forward the children’s learning. We have already met many of the children and know they are very keen and excited to be starting school.”
Steve Reilly, Senior Pastor at Bridge Community Church added:
“We are pleased to be working in partnership with Shakespeare school and Leeds City Council to support children and families in the city. We look forward to an ongoing partnership and the legacy created will continue to be an encouragement and support to the community.”