A proposal to provide more secondary pupil places at Murray Park School (MPS) has been submitted for consideration at Council Cabinet on Wednesday 4th October.

MPS currently has an admissions number of 220, giving a total of 1,100 spaces across year groups seven to 11. If approved at Council Cabinet, the number of admissions will go up to a maximum of 330 from September 2019.

The higher admission number would then move through the school gradually, year by year until reaching all year groups – eventually meaning an additional 550 places available across the school.

Councillor Sarah Russell, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills said:

“The expansion proposal has been developed in very close consultation with Murray Park School, and we are all really excited about the benefits that the expansion could bring. So far we have had very positive feedback from staff and parents.

“Larger schools have the ability to offer a much wider curriculum to pupils, as well as a greater range of opportunities that would only benefit students.”

A range of factors have been considered while putting together the proposal, including whether the MPS site can accommodate expansion, the impact on students’ learning, and funding implications.

A planning application was submitted in August this year, which includes the development of new buildings to facilitate increased numbers. The majority of these will be separate buildings, meaning minimal disruption to learning.

School budgets are largely based on pupil numbers, meaning that if there is an increase, the school will be provided with additional funding to support them in hiring staff.

In June 2017 Council Cabinet approved basic need funding of £8.5 million to increase accommodation at the school. Following this, a consultation on the proposal took place, with the majority of staff and parents who responded supporting the expansion.