Primary school expansion plans put on hold

East Sussex County Council
East Sussex County Council

A reduction in the demand for school places has seen plans to expand Meridian Community Primary School put on hold.

East Sussex County Council announced in August that it intended to enlarge the school, in Roderick Avenue North, to provide space for an additional 210 children by September 2018.

A council spokesman said those plans had now been postponed because the latest data showing births and GP registrations in Peacehaven indicated the demand for primary school places was beginning to slow down – even after taking into account the housing developments planned for the area.

The spokesman said: “Before committing limited capital funds to carrying out major development at the school, we feel it is important to consider the implications and the potentially destabilising effect enlargement would have on the school if it were unable to fill due to a lack of demand for places.

“The county council has been granted planning permission for the work, which is valid for three years, and we will be reviewing birth rates and GP data as it becomes available before a decision is needed on whether or not to enlarge the school.”

Meridian is currently a two form of entry school, meaning it has 60 children per year group, and has capacity for some 420 youngsters.

Figures published by the Department for Education stated there were 382 children on the role in 2015/16.

The proposals would have seen it expand to 90 children per year, with capacity for 630 pupils.

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