The next phase of work to expand the Ofsted rated outstanding Addington School has begun, as the £4.4million project gathers pace. It means the council will be able to improve the lives of 50 more young people, due to the increased capacity, by giving them the best SEND education possible, when the new building officially opens in September 2020.
Groundworks for a new single-storey block at the school in Woodley have now started, with completion anticipated on the building, which will include four classrooms, a café and social/breakout areas, in the spring.
The expansion will boost the school’s capacity to more than 250 students. It means more children with special educational needs and disabilities from the Wokingham borough will be able to be educated closer to home, making families’ lives easier by reducing journey times, as well as reducing the council’s travel costs.
Between 60 and 70 per cent of the construction will take place off site by contractor Reds10. This approach will reduce disruption to the school and its students. The building will be made indoors, in sections and then transported to the school in Woodlands Road, Woodley. Site set up began this week with groundworks taking place until January before the main build and fit out starts.
The construction method means the materials can be packed flat, often with a whole building on one truck, reducing the number of vehicle trips required as part of the project compared to traditional construction. Using construction approaches such as this will help Wokingham Borough Council towards its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2030.
Work should be completed in the spring, with the facilities officially opening for the new school year in September 2020.
This follows the official opening of two new multi-use games areas (MUGAs), a new sensory path and an expanded car park at the end of September this year. The school’s students were joined by Reading FC Women’s stars Brooke Chaplen and Grace Moloney as the new sports facilities were unveiled. These were constructed over the summer to ensure pupils had all the facilities they need upon returning to school for the Autumn term.
“I’m delighted to see the next phase of this exciting expansion project begin,” said Sal Thirlway, assistant director for children’s services (learning, achievement and partnerships). “The construction method we have chosen means there will be minimal disruption for the school and its students while still providing a fantastic, modern facility fitting the need of Addington School’s young people. It also showcases a type of construction method which will help the council in its goal of being carbon neutral by 2030.
“Being able to increase the number of places we are able to offer SEND children in Wokingham borough by building this new block, will help to improve the lives of our young people as well as their families by reducing travel times. Addington is rightly an Ofsted-rated outstanding school, which produces brilliant outcomes for young people. We are delighted we are going to be able to offer the chance to be educated there to even more children in our Borough from next year.”