The Billericay School has submitted plans for a multi-million pound expansion to it's facilities and the plans have been recommended for approval by Basildon Council.
The reason for the expansion is to solve problems with overcrowding by creating new classrooms for Science, English and Modern Languages and build a modern music block. The application will be considered by Basildon Council’s development control and traffic management committee on Tuesday.
The authority’s planning officers have recommended councillors should approve the scheme.
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted in planning report"]The design of the new buildings and extensions are acceptable. The upgrading of existing facilities and, in particular, the provision of new, specialist teaching accommodation for languages, music and science, would enable the school to raise educational attainment.[/quote]
The school has had to hold a quarter of lessons in demountable buildings for the last decade. The plans are to extend and refurbish the existing three-storey building, known as Block C, to create 14 extra classrooms, including new science laboratories, over three floors. There would also be a new single-storey, modern language block, containing seven classrooms and a single storey music block.
The proposals will be funded by the school’s controversial sale of its adjoining green belt land. The school was originally set to receive up to £10million from the sale of land, but a drop in land value mean the school is now expected to get £5.5million.
There have been no written objections to the plans submitted by local residents, although Billericay Town Council complained about the “poor and awkward” design of the Block C extension.
[quote width="auto" align="none" border="#0066cc" color="#0066cc" title="Quoted by Sue Hammond, Headteacher"]We are fulfilling what we set out to do ten years ago. At the moment nearly a quarter of all lessons are in demountable buildings and this will no longer be the case.[/quote]