This is what new building at Felpham school could look like

New facilities could be built at Felpham Community College to broaden its provision for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

An application has been submitted to West Sussex County Council for a single-storey standalone building which would house a Specialist Support Centre (SSC) accommodating 12 pupils, specifically catering for those with communication and interaction needs.

This would be on the site of the existing caretaker’s house and if approved could be ready by the start of the winter term in September 2023.

The project includes hard and soft external landscaping in the immediate vicinity of the new building.

Proposed new building at Felpham Community College

The building, towards the south-east corner of the school site near the homes in Drygrounds Lane, would include a main classroom, toilets, offices, calming room, therapy room, sensory room and group space.

The new building would incorporate renewable technologies which include air source heat pumps for hot water generation and underfloor heating. Solar panels are also proposed for the south facing slope of the pitched roof.

According to the application, West Sussex County Council currently places a high number of pupils with social communication difficulties in independent and non-maintained educational provision.

This is not only costs more money than local maintained options, but is also further away from pupils’ homes.

Proposed new building at Felpham Community College

The West Sussex SEND Strategy sets out a vision for increased access to specialist support within locally maintained mainstream schools in the form of SSCs.

The strategy supports plans to open new SSCs and to amend the designation of existing SSCs to enable them to accommodate pupils with social communication needs (one of the growth areas of need in West Sussex and also nationally).

Felpham Community College will be broadening its SEND provision to include an SSC to allow them to support pupils with social communication needs from September 2023.

The SSC will balance carefully the specialist support alongside the benefits of mainstream integration and will enable the school to support more pupils and support WSCC in keeping children with social communication needs in their local communities.

Proposed new building at Felpham Community College

West Sussex has pupils with significant social communication needs travelling to a variety of settings from all areas of the county.

Proposed new building at Felpham Community College
Proposed new building at Felpham Community College