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Excitement as £15.1m school refurbishment starts

Excitement is building at a Swansea school that is to undergo a £15.1m transformation in the next 20 months.

Pentrehafod-School

Swansea Lord Mayor David Hopkins has visited Pentrehafod Comprehensive to mark the official start of work that will improve facilities for generations to come.

The school's headteacher, Mrs Jennifer Ford, said the investment by Swansea Council and the Welsh Government was warmly welcome.

"Students, staff and governors are very pleased to be having a refurbished school. It will make a real difference to our learning and teaching as all students benefit from up-to-date resources and the best facilities. It's an exciting time for our school and is much deserved," said Mrs Ford.

The work, under the council's 21st Century Schools Programme, not only includes the refurbishment of key elements such as a new roof and windows, but also involves the partial rebuild and extension of the existing buildings.

Changes include:

•           The removal of demountables in the central courtyard of the school. Instead this area will be landscaped so that pupils and staff have access to it during the school day.

•           The Pentrehafod Alternative Curriculum Education (PACE) programme which is currently being delivered off campus will return to the school site. The relocation of this within the school grounds in a new purpose built unit will enable pupils to more easily access the mainstream curriculum.

•           New changing facilities will be provided in the new PACE unit and located at the front of the school site. This will also be available to the community out of school hours.

•           Sports facilities on the site will be further enhanced with upgraded play areas and refurbishment of the school sports hall that will continue to serve the local community out of school hours.

The council's Corporate Building and Property Services Team and Education Department will work with contractors Morgan Sindall to safely deliver the project while keeping disruption to classes to a minimum.

Cllr Andrea Lewis, Cabinet Member for Next Generation Services who oversees the development of new school buildings, said work would be completed by the end of 2018.

She added: "This development follows on from significant investment in other schools in Swansea including Gowerton, YGG Lôn Las, Burlais and Morriston which is now benefitting thousands of pupils and will continue to do so for many years to come.

"This is one of the final major pieces of work to take place in the latest phase of our 21st Century Schools Programme which has seen around £100m invested in school buildings in Swansea in the last five years. I'm pleased to say this major construction programme has been brought in on budget and on time."

Recently Swansea Council announced its intention to invest more than £100m in the next few years in new schools and buildings.

Cllr Jen Raynor, Cabinet Member for Education, said: "We have already started discussions with our Welsh Government colleagues about the next stage of the programme, and we will be looking to develop our plans over the coming months.

"We are already seeing the benefits that these new school buildings and improved infrastructure are delivering for pupils in Swansea, so we are determined to ensure many more pupils are taught in an environment that will equip and inspire teachers and youngsters."


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