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(UK) Bath: $3M for special school expansion; "growing demand"

Nov 25, 2020, Bath Echo: Council approves £2.2 million [$3M U.S.] project to transform closed Bath school https://www.bathecho.co.uk/news/politics/council-approves-project-transform-closed-school-92617/ Southern England A Bath school that shut at the end of the summer term is set to undergo a £2.2 million transformation. It shared the Frome Road campus with the Aspire Academy, which is set to expand to meet the growing demand for spaces for children with special educational needs and disabilities. Bath and North East Somerset Council last week approved funding for the project, which will boost student numbers to 120 by 2022/23. The school is part of the Wellsway Multi Academy Trust, whose chief operating officer, Tim Howes, said: “This will double the number of children aged four to 16 on roll and will also allow Aspire to add a small sixth form, with places for eight 16- to 18-year-olds. “It means we will be able to increase the number of places available locally for children with diagnosed social, emotional and mental health needs, for whom a mainstream school might not be appropriate. “We will also be able to offer some places for young people with more complex needs, including autistic spectrum conditions. “This additional provision is much needed in Bath and North East Somerset and should reduce the number of children who have to travel long distances outside the area for their schooling…. “It’s great news that these extra places will help us to meet the needs of more children in Bath and North East Somerset and will support them to achieve and thrive.” As well as improving local capacity, the project will cut the “unsustainable” cost to the council of children travelling outside the district to placements.