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(UK) Dudley: New $19M school for autism/severe learning difficulties planned

Mar 19, 2024, (UK) Express and Star: Plans for multi-million pound school take step forward with contractor appointed

Dudley Council is investing £15 million [$19M] in the Pens Meadow School to be built on the site of the former Pensnett High School. . . .

Once built, the school will provide education for 155 children and young people aged three to 19, together with a nursery assessment unit for the borough.

The purpose-built building will deliver better facilities for pupils with complex needs and severe learning difficulties, including autism and those with profound and multiple learning difficulties.

It will have therapy rooms, a hydrotherapy pool, changing facilities, outdoor teaching and play areas, and 14 classrooms where the layouts can be changed for children with additional needs.   . . .

Construction is programmed to be complete in the summer of 2025.

The school is set to be fully operational in January 2026, with a phased transition for some of the pupils to the new site starting in the autumn of 2025.

Councillor Patrick Harley, leader of the council said: “Pens Meadow is already a wonderful special school but to be able to provide a new purpose built site will take the school’s education provision to the next level.

“It is has been designed to significantly improve the education for the children and young people with complex needs and I’m delighted that we now have a contractor in place to deliver this ambitious build.”

Marie Hunter, headteacher of Pens Meadow School, said: “Our whole school community is very excited that the building of our new school will begin this spring. . . .

Des O’Neill, managing director of Interclass, said: "To secure such a wonderful project right on our doorstep is a true privilege, and we are thrilled to once again be working with Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council.

“This learning facility will be fully equipped with the latest technology to accommodate a range of educational needs, and we are immensely proud to create an environment where children can thrive and reach their full potential.”


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