Swindon Borough Council is currently considering how to provide additional secondary places needed for 2013 onwards in the northern sector, with options to expand Isambard Community School and Nova Hreod with an additional two forms of entry.
Cabinet member for Children’s Services coun David Renard said “as the primary schools in North Swindon have expanded more and more secondary age pupils have come through the system. We’re at the very early stages of talking with schools and governing bodies about how to accommodate more pupils.”
The question remains as to whether Isambard has the capacity for another two forms in each year group. Coun Renard expressed concern that decisions made just a few years ago have now limited future expansion possibilities. “Before Isambard School existed I was a member of the development’s shadow governing body. We highlighted design concerns at the time that certain aspects of the building, in particular the support areas, would struggle to accommodate the number of students proposed.
“Indeed, since the school opened the council has invested an extra £265,000 to expand the restaurant area for the four year groups currently at Isambard.”
Isambard headteacher Rachel Mattey said, “feasibility studies will begin shortly. If appropriate, statutory consultation will follow.”