At today’s cabinet meeting (6 March), Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, agreed to accept the funding for a new secondary school to be built in the city as part of a wider programme to develop new school places for Bristol.
The city’s population is predicted to grow to around 500,000 by 2027. This will mean that Bristol will have more children looking for school places than ever before.
In the face of this the council has been working hard alongside its partners on plans to try and make sure there are enough spaces for every local child as the city continues to grow.
Recent school expansions have increased the number of places available within the city to around 4,100 each year but recent predictions suggest that demand will increase to mean that the city needs around 4,600 places by 2022.
This decision is latest stage of the council’s work to provide enough places for the city. It paves the way for a brand new school in Lockleaze and will enable Bristol Brunel Academy to continue to increase the number of available places.
Cathedral Schools Trust (CST) will be running the school following a competitive process in 2016 with the Department for Education.
The new secondary school is set to be built in Lockleaze in north Bristol and is due to be called CST Trinity Academy. The school will draw on the experience and success of the other schools that are already part of the trust, including Bristol Cathedral Choir School.
Marvin Rees said:
“Bristol’s population has shown unprecedented growth in recent years. This presents many challenges for the city as we work with our partners to make sure we can inclusively grow our economy whilst still preserving our local communities and neighbourhoods.
“I am proud that we are able to approve these plans today. This work is crucial in order to make sure that we are able to meet the growing demand but we are aware that more needs to be done to meet this need in the future. We will continue to prioritise this work alongside the government’s Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) and our Learning City partners to make sure we are prepared for this challenge going forward.”
The council will be working to deliver this school in partnership with the Cathedral School Trust.
The new school is planned to open for Year 7 students in September 2019, growing year on year with an eventual capacity of 1,220 students, which is180 students per year group as well as sixth-form provision.
Stephen Parsons, Chair of Cathedral Schools Trust said:
“We are delighted to create a new school in Lockleaze, in partnership with the Mayor and Bristol City Council. CST Trinity Academy will work closely with all the schools across the trust to ensure that every child has access to the very best facilities and are able to fulfil their potential, ready for the world of work.”
Executive Principal of Cathedral Schools Trust, Neil Blundell said:
“We are delighted to announce the opening of the new CST Trinity Academy in Bristol. Our vision for this school is to provide opportunity and challenge for young people, whilst forming a positive and committed partnership with the local community.”
The approved plans use funding from the ESFA who are working with the council alongside other local organisations to make sure there are enough school places for the children of Bristol.
Cllr Anna Keen, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills said:
“We are pleased to be working in partnership with Cathedral Schools Trust. Demand for school places has never been higher and we are working hard with partners across the city to make sure we can meet this need. We are in discussions with the ESFA to make sure plans are being developed which are right for Bristol and will continue to work in partnership with our Learning City colleagues to make sure we can continue to stay ahead of the curve despite the large increases predicted.”
Secondary places for parents across the city were offered last week as part of National Offer Day.
These plans form part of Bristol’s Education Capital Strategy details of which can be found on our website.