Of all the things to be proud of in Bourne, I’m sure you’ll agree that our schools are no exception and I’m honoured to be a governor at both the Bourne Academy and Bourne Grammar schools. With the much-publicised rising birth rate in the county and Bourne’s housing growth placing extra demand on our schools, I wanted to allay any fears about school places for the future.
We’re ahead of the curve here, not only by preparing well within the existing primary schools of Westfield Primary Academy and Bourne Abbey Church of England Primary Academy but of course through our new school which is on its way too.
Across the county, £13.2m has been spent over the last year providing extra school capacity, and a further £31m of Government grant will be used over the next three years for expansions and new schools. Locally, the Grammar school is increasing its places following recent extensions and celebrated the largest intake of year 7 pupils in its history this year. From September 2014, 224 places will be offered to students who gained a qualifying score in the eleven-plus, meaning even more young people will benefit from the superb education there.
Not forgetting other local schools, including my home village school of Morton Church of England Primary, a vibrant place which has rising pupil numbers and recent building work for classroom and library extensions.
September will also see our new Bourne primary school opening its doors, providing top-class modern learning spaces and sporting facilities at the heart of our growing communities. This will be a wonderful asset to the families moving into the new Elsea Park homes and the county council will continue to involve both communities in these tremendous developments. The children will be able to travel to school without needing a car and the school is positioned to serve them locally without unnecessarily drawing young people from other areas.
With both my school Governor and county councillor hats on, I’ve been privileged to see the magnificent amount of team work which has gone into making all this a reality for Bourne. We’ve been working very closely with the new school operator, Bourne Abbey CE Primary Academy, South Kesteven District Council and Kier Homes to meet the demand in the right place and at the right time.
So the proud history of our current schools and their communities continues whilst we embrace the modern-day growth too. Whether you’re a local resident, a young family already in or preparing to enter the school system or, like me, your babies are long-since grown up, I’m sure we’ll all see the local benefits that these exciting times bring.